Feb. 17, 2006
LAS VEGAS, Nev. -- No. 12 Northwestern scratched out a run in the bottom of the seventh inning Friday night against Cal State Fullerton at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic, taking advantage of four Titan errors in the game for an opportunistic 5-4 win.
With the victory, the Wildcats improve to 4-2 on the year. Fullerton falls to 3-4 with the loss.
Freshman Tammy Williams (El Dorado Springs, Mo./Osceola) led off the bottom of the first inning for NU with a double off the fence in left-center field, then scored two batters later when junior Garland Cooper (Mission Viejo, Calif./Santa Margarita Catholic) lined a double to the exact same spot for an early 1-0 Northwestern lead.
In the top of the second, Fullerton put its leadoff batter on with a walk, but one out later senior second baseman Ashley Crane (Sammamish, Wash./Eastlake) made a nice double play, corralling a grounder and tagging the runner out herself before flipping to first for a 4-3 twin killing to end the inning.
Crane then led off the second by reaching base and advancing to second on an error. Freshman Erin Dyer (Homer Glen, Ill./Lockport) moved Crane to third. With two outs, Williams hit a ground ball up the middle where Fullerton second baseman Amanda Kamekona caught it with a dive, but not in time to get the speedy Williams at first. Crane's run gave the Wildcats a 2-0 lead.
Northwestern continued to score in the third. Junior Katie Logan (Tempe, Ariz./Corona del Sol) beat out an infield single to lead off the frame, but was erased trying to go from first to third on a hard Cooper single to right. Senior Kristen Amegin (West Sacramento, Calif./Elk Grove) then jacked a two-run home run over the center-field fence for a 4-0 advantage.
The homer was Amegin's second of the year and the 27th of the Northwestern all-time leader's career. The Titans replaced starter Brooke Weekley with Marissa Marzan after the blast.
Fullerton got all of the runs back in the top of the fourth, turning a hit by pitch and a single up the middle into a pair of scores after Ashley Van Boxmeer hit a double off the fence in right field to cut the Wildcat cushion to two, 4-2. A two-out walk was followed by a triple from Katie Gollhardt to score two more runs and knot the game, 4-4.
Northwestern starter Eileen Canney (Paradise, Calif./Paradise) whiffed the next batter to end the inning.
In the top of the sixth, Fullerton led off with a bloop single into left, and senior Courtnay Foster (Tucson, Ariz./Sahuaro) entered the circle in relief of Canney.
Foster and Marzan held each team's lineup scoreless into the seventh. In the bottom of the frame, Williams drew a leadoff walk to reach base for the fourth time in the contest. Two batters later, Cooper earned a walk to also reach base for the fourth time in the game and put runners on first and second with one out.
Marzan got a whiff for the second out of the inning, bringing senior Jamie Dotson (Santa Ana, Calif./Foothill) -- who walked in her previous three at bats -- to the plate. Dotson hit a slow roller deep in the hole to short, and the throw sailed over the first baseman's head, allowing Williams to scamper home for a 5-4 Northwestern victory.
Williams finished the game 2-for-3 with two runs scored and an RBI, while Cooper was 2-for-2 with a run and an RBI. Amegin also had two hits in the contest.
Foster pitched two innings of scoreless relief to earn the win, improving to 3-1 on the year. Marzan was tagged with the loss for Fullerton, falling to 1-1.