Feb. 17, 2007
LAS VEGAS -- No. 6 Northwestern got a six-run sixth inning and a two-hit, shutout performance from freshman hurler Lauren Delaney (Jefferson City, Mo./Helias) Saturday afternoon in a 10-0, six-inning thumping of Louisville Slugger Desert Classic host UNLV.
The win moves the Wildcats to 6-3 on the season, 4-0 at the Classic. UNLV's loss drops it to 7-2 on the year, 3-1 in the tournament.
UNLV put together the game's first serious threat in the bottom of the second, loading the bases on a walk, a hit batter and a single with one out. Delaney was able to get herself out of trouble, however, inducing a pop fly to Tammy Williams (Roscoe, Mo./Osceola) before notching a full-count strikeout to end the inning with no score in the game.
Northwestern mounted a rally of its own in the top of the third, cashing in on its opportunity. With one out, senior Katie Logan (Tempe, Ariz./Corona del Sol) beat out her second single of the game, moving to second on a wild pitch. Williams then singled through the right side of the infield to drive Logan in from second and give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead.
Senior Garland Cooper (Mission Viejo, Calif./Santa Margarita Catholic) then stepped to the plate and absolutely unleashed a behemoth of a home run over the right-center field fence to extend NU's lead to three, 3-0. The bomb -- which cleared both the playing field's fence AND Eller Media Stadium's much taller facility fence some 20 feet farther back and up a small hill -- was Cooper's fourth of the season and third of the weekend to give the newly crowned Northwestern all-time home run leader 36 for her career.
With the score still 3-0 in favor of NU heading into the top of the fifth, UNLV replaced starter Christie Robinson (3-1) with Casey Thompson.
With one out in the frame, Williams launched her second home run of the season over the fence in left to make the score 4-0.
In the top of the sixth inning, sophomore Erin Dyer (Homer Glen, Ill./Lockport) singled to third base to lead off the inning, then was replaced by pinch runner Julia Sears (Chicago, Ill./Marist). Freshman Emily Haug (Jefferson City, Mo./Helias) then drew a walk and was replaced at first by runner Ashley Lafever (Bettendorf, Iowa/Pleasant Valley). Pinch hitter Jessica Rigas (River Forest, Ill./Oak Park River Forest) drew another walk to load the bases with no outs, and UNLV brought Robinson back into the circle. Kelly Dyer (Homer Glen, Ill./Lockport) re-entered the game at first base for Rigas.
Darcy Sengewald (Frankfort, Ill./Lincoln Way East) drew NU's third-straight walk to force in Sears for a 5-0 lead, then Logan singled into left for her third hit of the game, driving in Lafever to extend the advantage to six, 6-0.
With still no outs in the inning, Williams plated Kelly Dyer with an RBI groundout, then Cooper walked to load the bases again. Nicole Pauly (Palatine, Ill./Palatine) then stroked a two-run single into center to score Sengewald and Logan and put the game into run-rule territory, 9-0.
An RBI groundout scoring Aly Euler (River Forest, Ill./Oak Park River Forest) from third (she replaced Cooper there) by Jessica Miller (Elberfeld, Ind./Techumseh) ended the scoring in the inning for the 'Cats with the lead at 10, 10-0.
Logan finished the game 3-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored, while Williams was 2-for-4 with three RBIs and two runs scored. Pauly also drove in a pair for the 'Cats.
Delaney went six innings to improve to 4-0 on the season, allowing two hits and four walks with nine strikeouts. The shutout is the first of her career.
Northwestern concludes its schedule at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic with an 11 a.m. CT contest tomorrow, Sunday, Feb. 18, against Cal Poly.