April 8, 2011
LOS ANGELES - The sixth-ranked Bruins came back twice on Friday night, tying the game in the seventh on a two-run homer by freshman Alyssa Tiumalu and evening it again in the 13th on an RBI single by sophomore B.B. Bates, but it was junior Andrea Harrison's solo homer in the 14th that gave UCLA another walk-off win in a 6-5 victory at Easton Stadium.
The Bruins, who posted their 11th-comeback victory of the season, fourth walk-off, non-mercy rule win and second in a row, improve to 28-5 overall and 4-0 in Pac-10 play, while the Cardinal fall to 24-8 and 0-4 in league action. The 14-inning marathon (time 4:02) was the longest since a 14-inning affair against Mississippi in 2005.
Harrison left the yard twice, driving in three and posting three hits. Senior GiOnna DiSalvatore also had a three-hit game, while Tiumalu, junior Samantha Camuso and freshman Talee Snow each recorded two hits. The Bruins had 14 hits as a team.
Junior Aleah Macon (3-0) was outstanding in relief, striking out eight in 8 2/3 innings, allowing one run, five hits and three walks. Senior Donna Kerr started and fanned seven in 5 1/3 frames, giving up four runs (three earned), six hits and five walks.
The game began as a pitchers duel between Kerr and Stanford's Teagan Gerhart, who went the first 13 innings and threw 231 pitches. In the first three innings, Kerr stranded five Cardinal on base and struck out two in the first, three in the second and one in the third. On the other side, Gerhart retired the first six batters she faced and faced the minimum of nine batters, allowing only a Tiumalu single to lead off the bottom of the third, but erasing her on a double play.
In the fourth, Stanford got on the board on one swing of the bat. Michelle Prong led off with a single up the middle, and one out later, Jenna Becerra pushed a bunt single to the 3-4 hole to put two aboard. Gerhart walked to load the bases, but Sarah Hassman then grounded one to short, with freshman Kellie Fox short-hopping it and throwing home to get the force on Prong. However, Stanford rallied with two outs, as Corey Hanewich cleared the bases with a triple to right-center to put the Cardinal up 3-0.
The Bruins countered with a big, two-out swing of their own to cut their deficit to a run. DiSalvatore bounced a two-out single up the middle and came home when Harrison laced a 1-0 pitch that just cleared the fence in right field to make it 3-2. The homer was Harrison's 11th of the season.
Stanford added what proved to be a big insurance run in the top of the sixth thanks to a UCLA error. Becerra reached on a miscue by DiSalvatore at third, and one out later, the Cardinal had the bases loaded after a walk to Hassman and a hit by pitch of Hanewich. With Macon coming in the game in relief of Kerr, the first batter she faced was Ashley Hansen, who lifted a scoring fly ball to left to bring home Becerra to make it 4-2.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Bruins rallied to tie the game. Junior Dani Yudin drew a one-out walk and came home when Tiumalu launched a 1-2 pitch over the fence in left field to even the score at four. It was Tiumalu's sixth homer of the season.
Now it was Macon and Gerhart locked in a pitchers duel in extra innings. Macon struck out a pair in the seventh, eighth and 10th, retiring the side in order in the eighth and ninth innings.
In the ninth, the Bruins loaded the bases with one out, but were turned away by Gerhart. Freshman Kellie Fox hit a one-out single up the middle, and when Hassman had it go by her, Fox moved all the way to third. After a walk to Yudin and an intentional free pass to Tiumalu, Gerhart got Camuso to pop up and freshman Jessica Hall on a strikeout to keep the game tied at four. The Bruins would leave two more on base in the 10th, 11th and 12th.
In the 13th, Stanford re-took the lead. Alix Van Zandt led off with a pinch-hit single up the middle, with Gerhart re-entering at first. Gerhart then stole second, and one out later, scored on a double to right-center by Hanewich to make it 5-4.
The Bruins responded again with a two-out run in the bottom of the 13th. With one out, Camuso reached on a check-swing single in front of the plate and was pinch-run for by senior Amy Crawford, who moved to second on a single to left by Snow. One out later, Bates singled through the right side to drive in Crawford and even the game at five.
After the Cardinal stranded two in the top of the 14th, the Bruins won it in the bottom half. Stanford lifted Gerhart for Ashley Chinn, who only threw three pitches, the last of which Harrison sent over the fence in center field for her 12th homer of the season to give UCLA the 6-5 win.
UCLA and Stanford continues its three-game series on Saturday at 6 p.m. Gametracker and free live audio will be available at UCLABruins.com.