April 29, 2006
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Freshmen Kirsten Slouber and Megan Ackerman hit home runs to lead LMU to a 10-4 victory in game two of a PCSC doubleheader with Santa Clara this afternoon at Smith Field. The Lions fell to the Broncos in game one, 3-0, but responded with 13 hits in the game two victory. Ackerman's home run was a grand slam in the bottom of the sixth and was the first of her career.
Game one was a pitcher's duel between LMU ace Tiffany Pagano and Santa Clara ace Liz Courter. The game winning run was scored in the top of the first inning. Pagano hit leadoff batter Shannon Linerud, and Linerud advanced to second on a sacrifice. A batter later, she came around on an RBI double by Jessica Clee.
The game would remain 1-0 until the top of the seventh. The Lions (26-18, 6-5) managed just two hits off Courter, and never reached third base.
In the top of the seventh, Santa Clara (19-31, 6-8) added two more insurance runs. Nori Kamada walked to lead off the inning and consecutive groundouts allowed her to advance to third base. A walk to Clee put another runner on base. Jenny Brown hit a double down the third base line to bring both runners home and give Santa Clara a 3-0 lead.
Pinch hitter Kirsten Whitt drew a walk in the bottom of the seventh inning, but a fielder's choice and a groundout ended the Lion rally.
Courter (9-13) picked up the complete game victory, shutting out the Lions with two hits, three walks and six strikeouts. Pagano (11-10) got the loss, allowing three earned runs on two hits with seven walks and six strikeouts.
Slouber and Brittany Bassett got LMU's only two hits of the game.
Game two was a different story. Slouber got the Lions on the scoreboard in LMU's first at-bat of the game. She led off the bottom of the first with a solo home run to left field to put the Lions up 1-0.
Santa Clara scored three runs in the top of the second. A double, three singles and a walk put the Broncos ahead, 3-1.
The Lions battled back with two runs in the bottom of the third. Margo Pineda led off the inning with a double off the wall in left center, and Hillaree Bennett was walked to put runners at first and second. A single up the middle by Tracy Cook loaded the bases with no out. Bassett followed with a single to right field, scoring two runs and tying the game.
LMU took the lead for good in the bottom of the fifth inning. Bennett was walked again to lead off the inning, and advanced to third on Bassett's single. Ackerman sent both runners home on a single to left field to give the Lions a 5-3 lead.
The Lion offensive show continued in the bottom of the sixth inning. With one out, Slouber and Pineda singled, and Bennett was walked for the third time in the game to load the bases. Cook drove home a run with a hard hit line drive single to left field, putting LMU ahead 6-3 and keeping the bases loaded. Ackerman put LMU ahead 10-3 with her first career home run, a grand slam to straight away center field.
Santa Clara scored a run in the top of the seventh, but Sara Overmier lined out to Ackerman at third base to end the game.
Samantha Lavino (12-6) picked up the win, allowing three earned runs on 10 hits with five strikeouts and four walks. Jackie Morales (3-9) took the loss, allowing seven runs on eight hits with two walks and one strikeout.
Ackerman finished the game 2-for-3 with a career-high six RBI. Bassett was 2-for-4 with two RBI, while Slouber finished the game with three hits. Bennett was 0-for-1 for the game with three walks, and scored every time she reached base. She also had two outfield assists.
Angela Kabanuck, Brown, Overmier and Valerie Mock each had two hits for the Broncos.
The two teams will conclude the four game series on Sunday in a doubleheader starting at noon. LMU will honor the four members of its senior class in a ceremony in between games.
- GO LIONS! -