Softball Takes Down Alabama, 4-3
May 25, 2007
SEATTLE-- A solo home run by Washington's Lauren Greer gave the Huskies the 4-3 lead and eventual victory over Alabama Friday afternoon to open the NCAA Super Regional in front of 1,552 fans at Husky Softball Stadium. The win improves Washington's record to 39-17 on the season and puts the team one win away from advancing to its eighth Women's College World Series and first since 2004. Alabama falls to 55-9 and will need to win two games tomorrow to extend its season.
"What a great battle," said head coach Heather Tarr. "It was exactly what we expected. Alabama is a great team. They came at us with all forces. We are very fortunate to get that last home run towards the end of the game, by Lauren Greer. Danielle pitched a great game and the game was exactly what we expected. It will be great one tomorrow."
The Huskies jumped on the scoreboard with a run in the bottom of the first inning with an RBI-single by senior All-American Dominique Lastrapes. The hit scored All-American Ashley Charters who led off the game with a single, was sacrificed to second and stole third base with her 33rd swipe of the season.
UW tacked on two more runs in the second frame on two hits and an Alabama error. Greer led off with a single through the right side and advanced to second on a sacrifice by Ashlyn Watson that did not result in an out when Greer beat the throw to second. Alicia Matthews moved the runners over with a sacrifice and a squeeze bunt by senior Nicole Moojen scored Greer. Watson scored from third when Alabama catcher Ashley Holcombe attempted a pick off and the ball skipped into left field to give the Huskies the 3-0 lead.
The Crimson Tide rallied back in the top of the third, using two hits and a UW error to even the score at 3-3. Holcombe led off with a single to right field and a throwing error by pitcher Danielle Lawrie on the next play put runners on second and third with no outs. Lawrie plunked Kellie Eubanks with a pitch to load the bases and pinch runner Mallory Benak scored on a fielder's choice by Brittany Rogers that didn't result in an out at the plate. Jordan Praytor kept the rally going with an RBI-single to Lastrapes at second base before Lawrie recorded a strikeout and two fly outs to get out of the inning without further damage.
Greer led off the bottom of the fourth inning with a home run over the left field fence to put Washington back on top 4-3 and the lead stuck as Lawrie struck out six in the final three innings to seal the UW victory.
Lawrie earned the win (28-11) as she held Alabama to three runs (two earned) on four hits with nine strikeouts.
Blair Potter (20-3) took the loss as she gave up four runs (three earned) on six hits with five strikeouts.
Charters went 3-for-3 for the Huskies, while Greer went 2-for-3 and scored two runs.
Praytor had two hits for the Crimson Tide, while Holcombe went 2-for-2.
Washington and Alabama square off again Saturday with a noon game. Should Alabama win, the teams would play a third-and-deciding game at 2:30 p.m with the winner punching a ticket to the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City, Okla., May 31-June 5.
Notes: This marks the first win for the Huskies in the first game of the Super Regional since the additional playoff round was added for the 2005 season ... Washington is now 15-0 in the postseason all-time at Husky Softball Stadium and 2-4 in Super Regional action ... with nine strikeouts, Danielle Lawrie extends her school record to 412 strikeouts this season ... Lawrie's complete game is her 29th of the season, tying her for fifth on the UW single-season list, while the win, her 28th of the season, ranks fourth on the UW season chart ... today marked Ashley Charters' seventh three-hit game of the season but her first going 3-for-3 ... Charters' run was her 55th of the season, tying her for 10th on the school's season list.