March 2, 2007
Honolulu, HI - The Saint Mary's softball team managed to knock off the No. 17 Oregon Ducks in their first game of the second day at the Mahalini Kipa Softball Tournament. The Gaels then dropped a close game to No. 25 Hawaii. The Gaels relied on pitching in both games. Against the Ducks the Gaels won the game 2-1 in nine innings. Against the Rainbow Warriors the Gaels fell 2-1.
Saint Mary's win over No. 17 Oregon marks the first time that the Gaels have beaten a ranked opponent since April 20, 2004 when the Gaels beat No. 9 Stanford 2-1 in the first game of a doubleheader.
Lefty Lauren Gardner earned today's win as she was spectacular for the Gaels. The senior southpaw pitched nine innings and only gave up one run. She kept the Ducks scoreless through eight frames. Garnder only allowed one walk while scattering seven hits.
In the top of the Ninth Oregon took a 1-0 lead on a sac fly. With only a half inning to make their mark the Gaels responded. Offensive catalyst Lauren Mello got on base, followed by Sadie Dolcini. Megan Galloway bunted the runners over to second and third base. Freshman Jenna Smith hit the walk off double to win the game. Mello and the speedy Molly Bergeson, who came in to pinch run for Dolcini, crossed the plate to give the Gaels the victory.
Fresh off one pitching duel the Gaels entered another. The Gaels got involved in their second straight extra inning game against their second straight ranked opponent, No. 25 Hawaii. Marlena Green pitched an outstanding game for the Gaels. Green pitched 7.1 innings while only giving up two runs, one earned. Unfortunately for Green She picked up the loss. She didn't walk any batters and struck out two.
After five frames the Gaels got on board first. Mello got on base via an error and was advanced to second on a sac bunt by Dolcini. Chelsea Loftis came to bat and struck a double scoring Mello and giving the Gaels a 1-0 lead.
Hawaii strung together two singles in the top of the seventh and eventually scored on a sac fly. Hawaii tied up the game on the close play at the plate. The scored the winning run in the top of the eight on an error.
The Gaels have shown that they can compete with the top competition they have been facing at the Mahalili Kipa Softball Tournament. They will now enter the final two days of competition. The teams are seeded based on the first two days of competition and play each other in a tournament style. The Gaels are currently seeded fifth and will compete against No. 17 Oregon tomorrow.