Feb. 14, 2009
LAS VEGAS - The fourth-ranked Bruins belted six home runs on Friday at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic, recording four against UNLV in a 9-7 victory and two more in a wild 16-10 win over 11th-ranked Northwestern in a game that ended at 1:11 a.m. Saturday morning.
Against UNLV, the Bruins (4-1) scored three in the top of the second to get off to an early lead. With one out, freshman Andrea Harrison singled, which was followed one out later by a walk to freshman Dani Yudin. Sophomore Monica Harrison then launched her first home run of the season to straightaway center to put UCLA up 3-0.
The Bruins added another in the top of the fourth on a one-out homer by junior Julie Burney to make it 4-0. The Rebels battled back in the bottom of the inning to cut their deficit in half. Laura Briones scored on a passed ball and an RBI groundout by Alyssia De La Torre made it 4-2.
UCLA broke it open with four in the top of the fifth. With sophomore GiOnna DiSalvatore at first after reaching on a fielder's choice, junior Megan Langenfeld walked to put two runners on. Sophomore Lauren Mirabal came on to pinch-run for DiSalvatore at second and scored on a double to left by junior Kaila Shull. Andrea Harrison followed with a three-run shot to center to give the Bruins an 8-2 advantage.
UNLV (4-2) fought back though, scoring five times in the bottom of the sixth. De La Torre hit a grand slam and a Marissa Nichols home run made it an 8-7 game.
Langenfeld gave the Bruins an insurance run in the top of the seventh with her first home run of the season to left-center. The junior pitched the final three innings in relief of junior Whitney Baker, allowing five runs (three earned) and four hits with five strikeouts. Baker (2-0) picked up the win, going the first four and allowing two runs (one earned), two hits and five walks with four strikeouts.
UCLA pounded out 11 hits, including two apiece by the Harrison sisters, Langenfeld and Shull. Both Harrison's also each drove in three runs.
In the very late game against Northwestern, the Wildcats scored five times in the top of the first. A two-run single by Erin Dyer and a three-run homer by Adrienne Monka made it 5-0 Northwestern.
In the bottom of the third, the Bruins rallied for six to take the lead. Burney walked to lead off, and one out later, Monica Harrison earned a free pass. After a single by senior Amanda Kamekona loaded the bases, sophomore Katie Schroeder went the opposite way to left for her first career grand slam and her fourth home run of the season to make it 5-4 Northwestern. Following a walk to DiSalvatore and a hit by pitch of Langenfeld, both runners moved up on a groundout. Both runners again moved up a base, with DiSalvatore scoring on a wild pitch to tie the game at five. Andrea Harrison then singled to the 5-6 hole, bringing in Langenfeld to give the Bruins a 6-5 advantage.
The Wildcats (3-3) tied it back up at six in the fourth on another home run by Monka to left, but the Bruins got the run back in the bottom of the inning. Yudin started the inning by reaching second after second baseman Nicole Pauly dropped a pop fly on the infield. Mirabal came in to run for Yudin and was sacrificed to third by Monica Harrison. Two batters later, DiSalvatore doubled to right-center to bring in Mirabal and give the Bruins the lead back at 7-6.
The lead was short-lived however, as the Wildcats used another long ball in the fifth to re-take the lead. Following a one-out hit by pitch of Robin Thompson, Pauly homered to right to make it 8-7. Northwestern tacked on another run in the top of the sixth on an RBI single by Tammy Williams that scored Jordan Wheeler to make it 9-7.
The Bruins (5-1) turned it on though in the bottom of the sixth, scoring nine times to turn it into a rout. Yudin led off with a walk and was pinch-run for by freshman Marti Reed. After a walk to Monica Harrison, Kamekona hit her first home run of the season to left-center to give the Bruins a 10-9 lead. Schroeder made it back-to-back jacks with her second homer of the game to left to give UCLA a two-run lead. The Bruins loaded the bases when DiSalvatore reached on an error, Langenfeld doubled and Shull was hit by a pitch. DiSalvatore came in to score on a wild pitch to make it 12-9 and an RBI single by Andrea Harrison plated Langenfeld to put the Bruins ahead 13-9. After Burney reached on a fielder's choice to reload the bases, Reed earned a walk to make it 14-9. Another bases-loaded walk to Monica Harrison made it 15-9 and the Bruins finished their scoring two batters later when Schroeder drove in Burney on a fielder's choice groundout.
Northwestern got to double figures in the seventh on a home run by Michelle Batts, but the Bruins held on for the 16-10 victory. Donna Kerr went the distance for the Bruins, tying a career high with 15 strikeouts and allowing 10 hits, 10 runs and one walk to improve to 3-1 on the season. Andrea Harrison, Kamekona and Schroeder each had two hits. Schroeder drove in a career-high six and Kamekona had three RBI.
The Bruins continue play at the UNLV Louisville Slugger Desert Classic on Saturday when they face fifth-ranked Michigan at 1:30 p.m. and Kentucky at 3:45 p.m.