March 14, 2010
Honolulu, Hawaii - Freshman Danielle Smith had three hits and a big two-run single in support of senior Melissa Dykema's three-hitter to lift LMU to a 4-0 victory over Troy in the consolation game of the 2010 Pepsi Malihini Kipa Aloha Tournament on Sunday in Honolulu, Hawaii. Senior Darcy Pagnini earned All-Tournament honors as the Lions (4-11) snap their longest losing streak in almost 11 years and carry some momentum into a 10-game home stand.
Smith put up her team-leading second three-hit game of the season and took over the team lead in batting average at .382. Smith seemed to enjoy the island life, hitting .462 (6-for-13) on the week with hits in four of the five contests.
After being routed 10-2 against the same Troy team just a day before, the Lions jumped on the Trojans early and never looked back. Back-to-back one-out walks to freshman Olivia Alvarez and junior Amy Charpentier in the second put runners on base for junior Jennifer Nayudu, who got LMU on the board by knocking in Alvarez with a double to left-center. One out later, Smith brought home Charpentier and Nayudu with a her first two career RBI on a single to right-center that gave LMU a 3-0 lead.
Nayudu and Smith were again in the mix in the fourth when the Lions tacked on another insurance run. With one away, Nayudu walked and, with two outs, Smith beat out an infield single. That kept the inning alive and seemed to rattle Troy starter Ashlyn Williams, who uncorked two wild pitches to allow Nayudu to come around from second.
Coming off of one of her best outings of the season in Saturday night's 2-0 loss to DePaul, Dykema (3-6) topped that with her three-hit shutout. Dykema carried a one-hitter through the first five innings and allowed just one runner to reach second base as the Trojans got just six balls out of the infield. Dykema struck out just one batter but the Lion defense had her back, committing no errors for the second straight game after posting six over the tournament's first three contests.
In addition to Smith's three hits, Nayudu finished 2-for-2 with an RBI and two runs scored and sophomore Sam Fischer
was 2-for-3. The trio is tied for the most multi-hit games for the Lions this year with three apiece.
The win completes a stretch in which the Lions had played 14 of their first 15 games away from home and also snaps the program's longest losing streak since dropping eight in a row from April 10-18, 1999. LMU returns home for its next 10 contests, starting on Tuesday when it hosts Harvard at noon, followed by Harvard playing Bucknell at Smith Field. The Lions will then welcome Bucknell, North Dakota, and Utah Valley for the Crowne Plaza LAX Showcase, which will feature 12 games over four days starting at 8 a.m. on Thursday. For complete schedule information, log on to the Tournament Central page at http://www.lmulions.com/sports/w-softbl/spec-rel/10-softbl-crowne-showcase.html.
- GO LIONS -