Softball Team Spilts Doubleheader At Memphis
April 22, 2006
SOUTHAVEN, Miss. - Freshman Vanessa Moreno scored two runs and drove in a pair to lead East Carolina to a 4-1 victory over Memphis in game one of a three-game Conference USA series here Saturday.
Memphis used a five-run third inning and a three-run, walk-off homerun by Kimmi Hayden to take game two 8-0.
With the split, ECU moves to 33-21 overall and 7-10 in C-USA and remains one-half game behind Memphis for sixth place. Memphis goes to 25-22 on the season and 7-9 in league play. Memphis took an early 1-0 lead in game one, but East Carolina came storming back with a three-run third inning to take command of the contest en route to the 4-1 victory.
East Carolina came back to take a 3-1 advantage in the top of the third, plating three runs on four hits. Moreno had a two-RBI single to rightcenter to score Joyce Roodenburg and Sarah Bibee, before Jessica Johnson doubled down the leftfield line to bring home Moreno.
Following ECU's three tallies, the U of M had opportunities to cut into the lead in each of the next two innings, but left the bases loaded in the third and two runners on in the fourth.
The Pirates then tacked on an unearned run in the top of the fifth to take a 4-1 lead, and ECU starter Keli Harrell had little trouble the rest of the way, as she gave up just the one earned run and struck out four to improve to 20-13 on the season.
Kubesch was handed the loss for Memphis, going the full seven innings, and allowing the four runs - three earned - on seven hits, while striking out seven.
The Tigers regrouped for the second game, getting a shutout from starting pitcher Nicki Johnson and clutch hits from Hayden and Jenna Kubesch, as it used two big innings to win by the eight-run rule.
That second half of the twinbill was locked in a scoreless tie through two and a half innings, before Memphis broke the game open with the five-run third.
The Lady Tigers sent 10 batters to the plate and scored the five runs, all unearned on four hits, two walks and two Pirate errors. Kubesch dealt the big blow, with a two-RBI single to leftfield to score Hayden and Bridgette McNulty. Cara Stiles, Tori Gross and Kubesch each scored a run, while Gross and Lindsey Pridgen picked up a RBI apiece.
Johnson then kept ECU off the board in the next two frames to keep the score 5-0, and allow Hayden to end the contest with her homer in the bottom of the fifth. Pridgen reached on an error to lead off the inning and Stiles drew a one-out walk before Hayden blasted her third round-tripper of the season over the leftfield fence.
Johnson took the win in the circle in game one, striking out five and allowing just three hits to improve to 11-8 on the season. Brooke Swann fell to 6-3 on the year for ECU, as she gave up five unearned runs in 2.2 innings of work.
The Lady Tigers and Pirates will wrap up the three-game set tomorrow at Greenbrook Park with the first pitch set for 1 p.m.