March 18, 2011
LOS ANGELES - Back-to-back home runs in the sixth inning by juniors Sam Fischer and Kelly Sarginson rallied LMU from a 2-0 deficit but Utah Valley's Deianna Russell hit a three-run home run in the top of the eighth to lift the Wolverines to a 5-3 extra innings victory on Friday as the 2011 Marina International Hotel Showcase continued at Smith Field. The Lions (8-16) and the Wolverines (2-12), foes in the Pacific Coast Softball Conference, combined for five home runs, with seven of the eight runs scored coming on round-trippers.
For the first five innings, LMU was struggling to muster hits against Josi Summers, who limited the Lions to just three hits over the first five frames. Fischer and Sarginson each nearly went deep in the earlier innings as Fischer was retired on deep flyouts in each of her first two at-bats and Sarginson sent one out to the warning track in left in the fourth, only to see it caught. They would get their timing down in the sixth, though. With two outs, Fischer belted her second homer of the year over the centerfield fence to bring the Lions back within one. Three pitches later, Sarginson smashed one to the identical spot, tying the game with her team-leading fifth of the season.
After the teams went quietly in the seventh, Utah Valley got a first crack at breaking the tie in the eighth. Using the international tiebreaker, the runner placed on second was bunted over to third for Samantha Telarroja and Maggie Christianson, who had both homered earlier in the contest. LMU sophomore Molly Medeiros came back to strike out Telarroja for the second out and intentionally walked Christianson, who had three hits on the day to that point. The decision seemed to be a good one until Russell turned on an inside pitch, sending it over the fence in left for her first home run of the season and a 5-2 UVU advantage.
As the home team, though, LMU still had one last at-bat in the eighth and they would put themselves in position for their first extra inning win of the season. Junior Kylie Ahlo
was placed on second and moved to third on senior Jennifer Nayudu's
ground out. Sophomore Danielle Smith
then beat out a grounder to the pitcher that brought home Ahlo to cut the deficit to two. Senior Amy Charpentier
followed with a single up the middle and the Lions had runners at first and second with one out and Fischer and Sarginson, LMU's two leading sluggers, coming up. Summers would get Fischer to pop up to second for the second out and then, after Sarginson stung a pitch over the fence but just foul, she lined out to left to end the game.
Medeiros (5-4) took the loss with 5 1/3 innings of relief of sophomore starter Dana Waldusky. Medeiros allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits and a walk while striking out three. Waldusky lasted 2 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on six hits and two strikeouts.
Smith recorded her team-leading ninth multi-hit game with her third consecutive two-hit performance in extending her hitting streak to six games. Sarginson also had two hits while Nayudu saw her LMU season-best hitting streak halted at nine games after going 0-for-3. With their home runs, both Fischer and Sarginson climbed up a spot on the LMU career charts. Fischer moved into a tie with Sami Strinz (2001-04) for third place with 29 while Sarginson is tied for eighth place with 18 career round-trippers.
Summers (2-8) held the Lions to seven hits in a nine-strikeout, no-walk performance. She allowed three runs, two of which were earned.
The scoring in regulation innings were all about back-to-back home runs as Utah Valley went ahead in the second inning on consecutive solo shots by Samantha Telarroja and Maggie Christianson. Christianson finished with a 3-for-3 afternoon, walking once and scoring once while driving in one.
The remainder of the tournament has had some schedule changes, with LMU now playing three games on Saturday. The day will start off as normal, with Canisius-Northern Colorado at 9 a.m. and LMU-Northern Colorado at 11 a.m. The Lions will then turnaround and play Canisius at 1 p.m. and close out the day against Bethune-Cookman at 3 p.m. Sunday's scheduled contest between LMU and Canisius has been pushed back to Wednesday at 1 p.m.
- GO LIONS -