Softball Advances to NCAA Championship Game

May 30, 2004

Final Stats

OKLAHOMA CITY - It took 12 innings and nearly four hours, but the defending NCAA Champion UCLA softball team (46-9) advanced to its fifth NCAA Championship appearance in a six-year span with a 3-1 victory over Stanford on Sunday afternoon in Oklahoma City. Caitlin Benyi opened the game with a lead-off home run and Lisa Dodd provided an RBI double to score Benyi in the top of the 12th inning to put UCLA in Monday's NCAA Championship game. The game will be televised live by ESPN at 5 pm Pacific Time on Monday evening.

For the seventh time this season, Caitlin Benyi opened the game with a lead-off home run. This time, she took a 1-0 pitch over the left field fence to give the Bruins a 1-0 lead. Claire Sua came within inches of a second solo home run in the inning, but a great over-the-fence catch by Stanford center fielder Catalina Morris ended the inning, bringing the Cardinal to bat.

Stanford countered in the bottom half of the frame as Morris posted a one-out single, went to second on a ground out by Lauren Lappin and came around to score on a single down the left field line by Jessica Allister to tie the game at 1-1.

In the top of the second inning, the Bruins loaded the bases on a lead-off walk by Stephanie Ramos and single by Jodie Legaspi. Emily Zaplatosch then put down a sacrifice bunt that was mishandled at first base to load the bases. Ashley Herrera was next up and grounded into a fielders choice. Julie Hoshizaki then stepped in and placed a hit into shallow right field. Legaspi was thrown out at the plate on the force out, but Zaplatosch became caught in a rundown between second and third base to end the inning and the UCLA threat.

In the fifth, the Cardinal rallied with a one-out single by Morris, followed by a sacrifice bunt attempt by Lappin. A Claire Sua error allowed Lappin to reach safely, giving the Cardinal runners on first and second with one out. Jessica Allister then singled into shallow center field. The ball was fielded by UCLA center fielder Stephanie Ramos, who gunned a throw to the plate. Sua cut the throw and fired to Andrea Duran at third base, getting Morris out for the second out of the inning. Leah Nelson then grounded out to end the inning, keeping the score tied at 1-1.

In the top of the seventh, Jodie Legaspi led off with a double for the Bruins and was sacrificed to third by Emily Zaplatosch. Unfortunately, Ashley Herrera and pinch-hitter Alissa Eno both struck out to end the inning and send the game to the bottom of the seventh still tied at 1-1.

Stanford countered with a one-out single in the bottom of the seventh by Jackie Rinehart. A fielders choice by Morris had Rinehart out at second base, leaving Lappin to ground out to end the inning, sending the game into extra innings.

UCLA would load the bases in the top of the ninth inning as Claire Sua opened the inning with a rope single through the left side of the Stanford infield before being replaced by pinch runner Tara Henry. Henry went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Stephanie Ramos before Jodie Legaspi walked. Emily Zaplatosch flied out before pinch-hitter Michelle Turner walked to load the bases for Julie Hoshizaki, who struck out to end the inning.

After Stanford went down in order in the bottom of the ninth, the Bruins tried to rally yet again. Andrea Duran posted a one-out double and went to third on a fly ball to deep right field hit by Zaplatosch. After Claire Sua was pitched around, Ramos struck out to end the inning and send the game to the bottom of the 10th inning.

Stanford took the initiative with the top of their order in the top of the 10th, as Rinehart and Morris started the inning with consecutive singles. After Lauren Lappin sacrificed the pair to second and third, Jessica Allister was intentionally walked to load the bases for Leah Nelson. Nelson grounded to Benyi at second base, and the second out of the inning was recorded on a fielders choice at the plate and Elizabeth Bendig grounded out to end the inning.

UCLA posted a run in the top of the 12th inning to take a 2-1 lead. Caitlin Benyi drew a two-out full-count walk and was sacrificed to second by Duran. An RBI double by Lisa Dodd provided an RBI, and an insurance run came across on a double by Ramos, scoring Dodd to give UCLA a 3-1 lead.

In the bottom half of the 12th, Keira Goerl recorded her fifth and sixth strikeouts of the game to open the inning and threw out Lauren Lappin at first base to end the inning and give UCLA the win.

The Bruins will play in their 17th NCAA Championship game on Monday evening. UCLA won its ninth NCAA Championship one year ago with a 1-0 nine-inning victory over California on Championship Monday. UCLA has played in the NCAA Championship Game in five of the last six years with losses in 2000 (Oklahoma) and 2001 (Arizona) and wins in 1999 (over Washington, 3-2) and in 2003 (over California, 1-0 in nine innings).

The game will be televised live on ESPN at 8 pm Eastern Time (5 pm PT). It is the first time that the NCAA Softball Championship Game will be played in "Prime Time."


EVENT INFORMATION
UCLA Health Sponsor - Event Information
Friday, Feb 12 - 10:15 AM PST
vs. Colorado State
College Station, TX
Friday, Feb 12 - 1:00 PM PST
at Texas A&M
College Station, TX
Saturday, Feb 13 - 10:15 AM PST
vs. Wichita State
College Station, TX
Saturday, Feb 13 - 3:15 PM PST
at Texas A&M
College Station, TX
Sunday, Feb 14 - 8:00 AM PST
vs. Colorado State
College Station, TX
Friday, Feb 19 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. UCF
Cathedral City, CA
Saturday, Feb 20 - 3:00 PM PST
vs. Notre Dame
Cathedral City, CA
Saturday, Feb 20 - 5:30 PM PST
vs. Cal Poly
Cathedral City, CA
Sunday, Feb 21 - 9:00 AM PST
vs. LSU
Cathedral City, CA
Sunday, Feb 21 - 11:30 AM PST
vs. Pacific
Cathedral City, CA
Thursday, Feb 25 - 5:30 PM PST
vs. Florida
Cathedral City, CA
Friday, Feb 26 - 12:30 PM PST
vs. Georgia
Cathedral City, CA
Friday, Feb 26 - 3:00 PM PST
vs. BYU
Cathedral City, CA
Saturday, Feb 27 - 9:30 AM PST
vs. Oklahoma
Cathedral City, CA
Sunday, Feb 28 - 9:00 AM PST
vs. Northwestern
Cathedral City, CA
Wednesday, Mar 02 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Michigan
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, Mar 04 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. UC Santa Barbara
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Mar 05 - 1:00 PM PST
vs. Charleston Southern
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Mar 05 - 3:30 PM PST
vs. Syracuse
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, Mar 06 - 1:00 PM PST
vs. Florida State
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, Mar 06 - 3:30 PM PST
vs. UC Davis
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, Mar 11 - 4:30 PM PST
vs. Mississippi State
Lakewood, CA
Friday, Mar 11 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Long Beach State
Lakewood, CA
Saturday, Mar 12 - 11:30 AM PST
vs. Utah Valley
Lakewood, CA
Saturday, Mar 12 - 4:30 PM PST
vs. Iowa State
Lakewood, CA
Sunday, Mar 13 - 10:00 AM PST
vs. Princeton
Lakewood, CA
Saturday, Mar 19 - 3:30 PM PST
at California
Berkeley, CA
Sunday, Mar 20 - 3:00 PM PST
at California
Berkeley, CA
Monday, Mar 21 - 4:00 PM PST
at California
Berkeley, CA
Thursday, Mar 24 - 5:00 PM PST
vs. Washington
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, Mar 25 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Washington
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Mar 26 - 12:30 PM PST
vs. Washington
Los Angeles, CA
Tuesday, Mar 29 - 6:00 PM PST
at Cal State Fullerton
Fullerton, CA
Friday, Apr 01 - 6:00 PM PST
at Oregon
Eugene, OR
Saturday, Apr 02 - 7:30 PM PST
at Oregon
Eugene, OR
Sunday, Apr 03 - 2:00 PM PST
at Oregon
Eugene, OR
Saturday, Apr 09 - 7:30 PM PST
vs. Stanford
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, Apr 10 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Stanford
Los Angeles, CA
Monday, Apr 11 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Stanford
Los Angeles, CA
Wednesday, Apr 13 - 2:00 PM PST
vs. CSUN
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, Apr 15 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Oregon State
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Apr 16 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Oregon State
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, Apr 17 - 12:00 PM PST
vs. Oregon State
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Apr 23 - 2:00 PM PST
at Arizona
Tucson, AZ
Sunday, Apr 24 - 2:00 PM PST
at Arizona
Tucson, AZ
Monday, Apr 25 - 7:00 PM PST
at Arizona
Tucson, AZ
Friday, Apr 29 - 5:00 PM PST
vs. Arizona State
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Apr 30 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Arizona State
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, May 01 - 12:00 PM PST
vs. Arizona State
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, May 06 - 6:00 PM PST
at Utah
Salt Lake City, UT
BRUINS ON PAC-12 NETWORKS