April 22, 2007
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Tiffany Pagano earned her 22nd career shutout, tying the LMU career record to help the Lions earn a series sweep over Portland State this afternoon at Smith Field. MiaSarah Cesena's RBI triple in the top of the seventh inning helped the Lions to a 4-3 game one win. The LMU offense exploded for 17 hits in the 10-0 game two five-inning victory. Pagano allowed one hit in the series finale, earning her second straight shutout and her fourth in six PCSC starts. The Lions remain in first place in the conference standings with a 10-2 record.
LMU has now won five straight, and 10 of its last 11 games. Portland State falls to 18-31 overall, 3-8 in conference play.
In game one, Portland State scored first, as Stephanie Bean led off the game with a double to right center. She moved to third on a sacrifice by Kimi Daniel. After Mandy Hill was hit by a pitch, the Vikings scored the first run on an RBI single by Brandi Scoggins. Jackie Heide's single loaded the bases, but a throwing error allowed Hill to score from third to give PSU a 2-0 lead in the first inning.
Despite having runners at first and third in the second, the Lions did not get on the board until the third inning. After Kirsten Whitt led off the inning with a walk, Kirsten Slouber hit her fourth home run of the season to left field to tie the game at 2-2.
Another LMU home run in the fourth inning gave the Lions a 3-2 lead. Megan Ackerman led off the inning with a solo home run that barely cleared the fence in left center, but landed on the outside of the playing field to give the Lions the lead. It wouldn't last long as Jana Rae Slayton led off the bottom of the inning with a home run to right field to things back up, 3-3.
LMU starter Melissa Dykema settled down following the home run, allowing just one base runner the rest of the way.
With the game tied 3-3 heading into the seventh inning, the Lions knew that it was their time to make another comeback. With one out, Slouber singled up the middle. The next batter, Cesena, drove a perfect ball just fair down the right field line, allowing the speedy Slouber to score from first and giving the Lions a 4-3 lead.
That would be all Dykema needed as she got three strikeouts in the bottom of the seventh to earn her 21st win of the season. She improves to 21-7 on the year and moves into third place on the LMU single season wins chart.
Slouber was 3-for-4 in game one, driving in two runs and scoring twice, including the game-winner. Cesena was 2-for-4 with the game-winning RBI and Ackerman hit her sixth home run of the season.
LMU's offense had done enough in the first three games to earn three wins, but the Lions finally got things going in game four of the series.
Portland State would get its only hit of the game to lead off the bottom of the first, as Stephanie Bean singled to right field. She would advance to third, but get no closer in the inning.
After that Pagano retired 12 straight batters, including five strikeouts. An error allowed the leadoff batter in the fifth inning to reach, but a double play and a ground out earned Pagano her fourth PCSC shutout. It is the eighth of the season, and the 22nd of her career. Pagano ties the mark set by Jennifer Heliotes (1999-02) of 22. For the day, she allowed just one hits with no walks, striking out five.
In four PCSC home starts this season, Pagano has not allowed a run. In fact, in 25.0 innings pitched, Pagano has allowed just seven hits and two walks and has struck out 30 batters.
The Lions broke into the scoring column in the second inning. A single by Ackerman led off the inning, and singles by Whitt and Slouber loaded the bases with one out. Cesena brought in two runs with another single, and Margo Pineda gave the Lions a 3-0 lead with a single up the middle. A two-RBI single by Kylie Conroy made it a 5-0 LMU lead.
The score remained 5-0 until the top of the fifth inning. Christine Foley led off with a single and the Lions took a 7-0 lead on a home run by Ackerman. It was her second of the day and her seventh of the year.
Chelsie Tysdal continued the hitting with a single to center field, and her pinch runner, J.J. Hartung came around to score on Slouber's RBI single. Cesena's single to center field gave the Lions runners at the corners, and the ninth run of the game came in to score on a wild pitch. Pineda's RBI single gave LMU a 10-0 lead with just one out.
The Vikings were unable to score in the bottom of the fifth and the game ended as a 10-0 LMU win.
Janice Damo (0-9) took the loss for PSU, allowing five runs on nine hits with one walk and two strikeouts.
Conroy was a perfect 4-for-4 with two RBI in game two, while Pineda was 3-for-4 with two RBI and one run scored. Slouber was 2-for-2 with two runs and an RBI and Cesena was 2-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored. Ackerman hit her team-leading seventh home run and was 2-for3 with two RBI and two runs scored.
The Lions wrap up their home schedule next weekend, hosting second place Saint Mary's for a four-game series beginning on Saturday at noon. LMU will honor its three seniors in their final home games on Sunday.
- GO LIONS! -