May 23, 2010
ATLANTA – Mikayla Endicott struck out four of the five batters she faced in relief to lead the Oregon Softball team (36-19) to a 4-3 extra inning victory over host and No. 8 nationally-ranked Georgia Tech (51-11) Sunday afternoon at Shirley Clements Mewborn Field.
“I thought Georgia Tech played great,” Oregon head coach Mike White said. “We had a great regional here. After they tied it up in the seventh, I worried that we wouldn’t be able to get the win. A lot of teams with our level of experience couldn’t have done that. But, I thought we played well, we just played basic small ball and got the sacrifice fly.”
The Ducks will make their first-ever appearance in the NCAA Softball Super Regional and will play the winner of the Columbus, Mo., winner at a site yet to be determined.
The Yellow Jackets got eight solid innings from freshman Hope Rush, who came back from a rough start against Oregon Saturday.
“We put up a great fight,” head coach Sharon Perkins said. “We made good adjustments at the plate today, and stayed in it the whole game.”
Oregon got on the board first with a run in the second inning. After loading the bases with one out, Ashley Kivett drew a walk off Hope Rush to score Monique Fuiava but a spectacular play at second base by Jen Yee and line out by Neena Bryant ended the Ducks threat.
Jen Yee evened the score at 1-1 with her 29th homerun of the season to leadoff the bottom of the third. Her homerun moved her into sole possession of 13th place on the NCAA all-time home run list with 65 and has now scored 267 runs in her career, good for fifth all-time in NCAA history.
Allie Burger put the Ducks back on top with a two-out triple in the top of the fourth to drive in Kivett. Bryant pushed the lead to 3-1 with an RBI single threw the left side before Rush could close out the inning.
The Yellow Jackets threatened in the fifth, getting two on with one out but Christy Jones overran third base on a single by Kate Kuzma and was caught in a rundown. Kelsi Weseman skied out to centerfield to end the inning.
Tech finally broke through in the seventh inning behind a Kuzma single up the middle to bring in Shannon Bear from third base with only one out. The Ducks then walked Weseman to load the bases for Kristine Priebe, who came through with a game-tying single threw the left side of the infield.
Moore, who pitched a fantastic game for Oregon, was replaced by Mikayla Endicott. The Ducks relief pitcher put an end to the Jackets rally by striking out Rush and Caitlin Jordan to send the game in to extra innings.
Carlyn Re led off the eighth inning with a single up the middle for the Ducks. She was replaced on the base paths by Shelly Deadmond, who quickly moved to second on a Rush wild pitch and then was sacrificed over to third on a Kaitlin Vitek bunt. Kivett then hit a high sacrifice fly to center to give Oregon a 4-3 lead.
Endicott set down the Yellow Jackets in order in the bottom of the eighth inning to end the Jackets season.
– NCAA Softball Regional Game Six –