March 2, 2007

Gauchos Upset No. 2 Arizona State to Earn Split on First Day of Sun Devil Invitational

March 2, 2007

Box Score

TEMPE, Ariz. - Junior Danielle Meyers hit one out of the park driving in four runs and leading UC Santa Barbara to an 8-7 upset over No. 2 Arizona State Friday evening at the Sun Devil/Wilson DeMarini Invitational to help the Gauchos split a pair of games on the tournament's opening day. The Gauchos dropped the previous game to Houston, 1-0.

With the split, UCSB is now 11-4 on the season and 3-3 on the road. Arizona State picked up only its second loss of the season and now stands at 17-2.

Senior Jessica Hejna went 2-for-3 with a double and two runs while sophomore Tiffany Wright was 2-for-4 with two runs and one RBI. Meyers provided the day's heroics as she drove in a total of five runs with her second homer of the season. Senior Liz Walters also drove in a pair of runs and went 1-for-3 at the plate.

Freshman pitcher MeLinda Matsumoto remained perfect as she picked up her sixth win of the season after pitching six innings allowing seven runs on eight hits with one strikeout. Jennifer Davis earned the save after pitching an inning allowing one hit and striking out one.

Kaitlin Cochran led the Sun Devils going 2-for-2 with a double, two runs and a stolen base while Megan Elliott was 1-for-2 with a homerun and two RBI. Elliott also picked up the loss for ASU after pitching a complete game, giving up eight runs on nine hits and striking out three.

At the bottom of the first inning, ASU got on the board when Bianca Cruz doubled to right center bringing home the first Sun Devil run of the evening. Arizona State scored two more at the bottom of the second and Mindy Cowles grounded out to the shortstop bringing in Kaitlin Cochran for the Sun Devils fourth run at the bottom of the third to stretch the lead to 4-0.

At the top of the fourth, the Gauchos finally broke through their scoring drought. Hejna doubled to left field at the top of the order and Tisha Duran followed with a single to put Hejna in scoring position. A bunt single from Tiffany Wright brought Hejna in for the first UCSB run of the day. With runners on first and second and no outs, Brittany Putich reached on a Sun Devil error to load the bases. Meyers homered to bring in four Gaucho runs and capture the 5-4 lead.

UCSB kept rolling at the top of the fifth. Hejna once again led off, this time with a single up the middle and then advanced on a sacrifice bunt from Duran. A single from Wright advanced Hejna to third and Wright then advanced when Putich grounded out to third base. Elliott walked the next two batters bringing home Hejna for her second run of the game. A single to right field from Walters brought home Hansen and Wright giving the Gauchos an 8-4 edge.

The Sun Devils fought back in the bottom of the inning. With one out, Mindy Cowles walked and then advanced to third when Rhiannon Baca reached on a UCSB error. Heidi Knabe grounded out to shortstop bringing Cowles home. Pinch hitter Megan Elliot came in and fired one out of the park driving in Baca to cut the UCSB lead to 8-7.

The Sun Devils failed to convert three hits in the final two innings, securing the Gauchos' 8-7 upset. This marks Santa Barbara's second win over a ranked team in 2007. At the season opening San Diego State Tournament, the Gauchos captured an 8-6 victory over then-ranked No. 23 Massachusetts.

In the first game of the day, Houston's Laura Durham hit a homerun at the top of the seventh inning to score the lone run of the game and capture the 1-0 win for the Cougars. Houston's Angel Shamblin threw a complete game shutout for the Cougars allowing no runs on two hits with two walks and eight strikeouts. With the win, Shamblin improves to 8-3 on the season while the Cougars are now 15-6 overall.

Sophomore second basemen Christine Ramos led the Gauchos going 2-for-3 at the plate, picking up the lone hits of the game for UCSB. Senior hurler Davis took the loss after throwing a complete game allowing just one earned run on four hits, walking five and striking out two batters. Davis is now 1-3 on the season.

UCSB will continue action at the Sun Devil/Wilson DeMarini Invitational on Saturday with games against Utah Valley State and the University of North Florida. The games are to be played at 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. local time.