April 6, 2012
Box Score |
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - -
The No. 12/13 University of Louisville softball team posted a pair of one-hit shutouts with a 1-0 and a 2-0 win over BIG EAST Conference opponent Rutgers Friday afternoon at Ulmer Stadium. Louisville (32-2, 6-2) and Rutgers (16-19, 5-5) will wrap up the three-game series Saturday at 11 a.m. following the annual Cardinal Egg Hunt.
"We're still finding ways to win games even though our offense is sputtering a bit," said U of L head coach Sandy Pearsall. "All of our pitchers threw well today and our defense was outstanding, and that was the key to our success. "
Louisville 1 - Rutgers 0
In game one, freshman Kayla Soles' one-out RBI double in the bottom of the seventh provided the winning run in the walk-off victory and sophomores Caralisa Connell and Chelsea Leonard combined on the one-hit shutout as the Cards defeated Rutgers 1-0.
The game featured a pitcher's duel with neither team recording a hit until Brittney Lindley delivered a two-out single in the third. Chandler Howard followed with a walk to place two runners aboard for the Scarlet Knights. Connell got Jennifer Harabedian to ground out to end the threat. Rutgers' only other scoring opportunity came in the sixth when Kylee Bishop drew a leadoff walk and took second on Lindsey Curran's sacrifice bunt. Cleanup hitter Lindley was intentionally walked to put two on with two outs. Leonard retired the next batter to end the inning.
Rutgers ace Alyssa Landrith held the Cards hitless until the fifth, when sophomore Jordan Trimble connected on a leadoff double. Soles' sacrifice bunt sent her to third with one out, but Landrith retired the next two batters to stave off the run.
Senior Kristin Austin registered a one-out single in the sixth, but Louisville came up empty as Landrith and the Scarlet Knight defense held strong.
The Cards finally broke through in the seventh when Trimble delivered a one-out hit and came around to score on Soles' double for the 1-0 win.
Leonard (7-0) did not allow a hit and struck out two in 3.0 innings of relief to get the win. Connell started the game and gave up only one while striking out three in 4.0 innings. Trimble was 2 for 3 with the game-winning run. Soles was 1 for 2 with an RBI.
Landrith (11-6) took the loss, allowing one earned run on four hits and striking out three in 6.1 innings. Lindley accounted for Rutgers' lone hit.
Louisville 2 - Rutgers 0
In the nightcap, freshman Whitney Arion went 2 for 2 with one RBI and senior Tori Collins took a no-hitter into the seventh inning as the Cards completed the doubleheader sweep with a 2-0 win and their 15th shutout of the season.
Louisville struck early with a run in the first when junior Jennifer Esteban led off with a single, stole second and came home on Austin's RBI single.
The Cards added an insurance run in the fourth. Soles was safe on an infield single and Arion followed with an RBI double to make the score 2-0.
Rutgers pitcher Abbey Houston did not allow a hit through the next two innings, but the Scarlet Knights' offensive chances were stymied by Collins and the Cardinal defense.
Collins retired the first six batters she faced in the game - five on strikeouts - until issuing back-to-back walks to start the third. She went on to retired the next 10 batters before a two-out error allowed a runner in the sixth. She got the next batter to fly out to send the game into the seventh and make a bid for her first career no-hitter. After one out in the seventh, Rutgers' Chandler Howard sent a fly ball to shallow right center field that fell in for the Scarlet Knights lone hit of the game. Collins induced a quick groundout and dealt her 10th strikeout to end the game.
With the complete game shutout, Collins improved to 14-1 after allowing one hit, two walks and striking out 10.
Houston (4-10) took the loss, giving up two earned runs on six hits and striking out one in 6.0 innings.
Prior to Saturday's series finale, Cardinal Athletics will hold its annual Cardinal Egg Hunt at 10 a.m. Admission is free.