May 18, 2007
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Tanisha Milca hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the tenth-inning to lead Hawai'i to a 2-0 win over UC Santa Barbara in the opening game of the Los Angeles Regional of the NCAA Division I Championships at UCLA's Easton Stadium Friday afternoon.
With the loss, UC Santa Barbara falls to 30-22 on the season while Hawai'i is now 47-11 overall.
Jennifer Davis (14-15) provided stellar pitching for the Gauchos as she gave up just two runs on three hits while walking five and fanning five of the 37 batters faced. The Whittier, Calif. native pitched five hit-less innings and retired 11 consecutive batters before giving up her first hit to Kaulana Gould in the bottom of the sixth.
The Gaucho offense, despite out-hitting the Rainbow Wahine six-to-three and putting seven batters in scoring position, was unable to produce any runs. UCSB's leadoff hitter got on-base in six of the 10 innings, but the Gauchos left 10 runners stranded throughout the game.
For UCSB sophomore Christine Ramos went 2-for-4 with a double, a stolen base and a sacrifice bunt while Davis was 2-for-5 at the plate.
In addition to Gould and Milca, Kate Robinson had the only other Hawai'i hit of the game. Justine Smethurst (18-8) pitched the complete game shutout allowing six hits while walking four and striking out 12 of the 40 batters she faced.
Today's game marked the third 10-inning contest of the year for the Gauchos and the tenth extra-inning game this season. UCSB now holds a 5-5 record in extra innings.
Making their third postseason appearance in four years, the Gauchos are still in search of their first NCAA Tournament victory and have gone 0-5 in postseason match-ups.
"I thought Jenn (Davis) pitched a phenomenal game and she couldn't have pitched any better. I thought we played some solid defense and we had the runner's on-base but we couldn't find a way to score them. It was a tough game, but Hawai'i played a good game and their pitcher did really well against us," commented head coach Kristy Schroeder.
UC Santa Barbara will be back in action on Saturday when they face the loser between No. 13 UCLA and LMU at 5:30 p.m. at UCLA's Easton Stadium. Regionals are a double elimination format, so the Gauchos must win tomorrow's game to stay live in NCAA Tournament play.