Feb. 10, 2013
LAS VEGAS - Junior Katie Keller tied a school record with seven RBIs and had two home runs and Katelyn Mann went 4 for 4 with one homer as the No. 18 University of Louisville softball team used a program-record 21 hits to beat Minnesota 16-8 in six innings Sunday at the UNLV Sportco Kick-Off Classic.
The Golden Gophers (0-3) answered with four runs in the bottom of the first. Tyler Walker drew a leadoff walk and was safe at second on an error when Erica Meyer reached on a fielder's choice. Both runners scored on Kaitlyn Richardson's double. Two outs later, Brandi McGregor's home run gave Minnesota a 4-1 lead.
Louisville answered with a five spot in the top of the second. Katelyn Mann got the inning started with a base hit and moved to third on Maggie Ruckenbrod's double. Jasmine Smithson-Willett walked to load the bases. Mann was out at the plate on Jennifer Esteban's fielder's choice, but Katie Keller drew a walk to bring Ruckenbrod home. Wolny's sacrifice fly plated Smithson-Willett to pull the Cards within a run. Taner Fowler's first home run of the season, a shot over centerfield, gave Louisville a 6-4 lead.
A two-run homer by Bree Blanchett tied the game at 6-6 in the bottom of the third.
Louisville tallied four more runs in the fifth. Arion led off with a single, moved around to third on hits by Mann and Ruckenbrod. Keller sent a two-out, two-run double to the right field fence to increase the lead to 10-6. After a hit by Wolny, Fowler's RBI single made the score 11-6.
The Cardinals used home runs from Mann and Keller to put up another five spot in the sixth. Mann's two-run shot over the left field fence increased the lead to 13-6. Arion started the inning with a single and Mann took the first pitch of her at bat over the left field wall for her fourth hit of the game. One out later, Smithson-Willett and Kayla Soles drew back-to-back walks to set up Keller's shot over the right field fence. Her second home run of the game and team-best fourth of the season gave Louisville a 16-6 lead.
But the scoring was not over as Minnesota added a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth. Meyer delivered a two-out single and Richardson connected on the seventh home run of the game for the 16-8 final.
Caralisa Connell (2-1) got the win, allowing four earned runs on five hits and striking out two in 4.1 innings of relief. Mann was 4 for 4 with a home run, two RBIs and two runs. Keller was 3 for 4 with two homers, a double, seven RBIs and four runs. Fowler was 3 for 4 with a home run and four RBIs. Trimble was 3 for 4.
Kelsey Kimminau (0-1) took the loss, giving up five earned runs on six hits in 2.2 innings of relief. Richardson was 3 for 4 with a home run and four RBIs.
U of L will head to Jacksonville, Fla., for the Jacksonville University Tournament next weekend.