Feb. 29, 2012
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - Dacia Hale and Tricia Van Winkle both drove in two runs with extra base hits and Mel Goff came on in relief to get the final two outs of the game as Louisiana Tech defeated Stephen F. Austin 6-5 at SFA Field Wednesday afternoon.
With Tech clinging to a 6-4 lead with runners on first and second and one out in the bottom of the seventh inning, Goff relieved Erin Kipp in the circle. After surrendering an RBI single to the first batter she faced to cut the lead to 6-5, Goff struck out the Ladyjacks top hitter Cadie Weaver and induced a ground out to shortstop for the final out to pick up her second save of the season.
"Mel did a good job (in relief)," said Tech head coach Sarah Dawson. "She came in and threw strikes which is what we needed to see out of her. In her last outing, she struggled to find the strike zone. We worked on some things mechanically even as late as last night and she definitely felt more comfortable. Michelle (Jones) has been pitching so well for us and we really need both Mel and Erin to compliment her. She really held her composure with tying run on third and less than two outs.
"Michelle made a great play at shortstop for the final out. It was a high hopper just beyond (our third baseman's) reach. Michelle fielded it in the hole, turned and threw a strike to first to get the runner by a quarter of a step. It was big for her and for us. She had booted a ball earlier in the inning to help get us in that situation so it was good to see her redeem herself."
Kipp (2-2) earned the win, allowing five runs - four earned - on six hits and four walks in 6.2 innings of action.
Tech took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning as Hale reached on an error, stole second base and scored on a two-out RBI double by Katelynn Hill to right centerfield.
Kipp retired nine of the first 10 batters she faced as Tech added two more runs in the top of the fourth inning to make the score 3-0. Janna Frandrup singled and moved to second on a walk to Hale. Two outs later, both runners came around to score on a two-run double by Van Winkle to left centerfield.
"I thought we did a great job of getting leadoffs on and hitting with two outs," Dawson said. "Tricia had a big hit for us in the fourth, and we had some other two out hits later on. It was good to see Tricia hit it hard. We know she has power, and she was close a number of times (this past weekend). It was great to see her find a hole and push the runs across."
SFA (5-11) answered in the bottom of the frame, scoring three runs to tie the game at 3-3. The first four batters reached against Kipp on back-to-back singles and then back-to-back walks. A pair of sacrifice flies scored the final two outs of the inning.
Tech wasted little time in retaking the lead in the top of the fifth inning, scoring three runs on three hits. Kipp led the inning off with a single and one out later, Amanda Krueger was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second. Frandrup followed with a run-scoring single to left field to give Tech a 4-3 lead.
Hale then followed with a towering home run to centerfield, plating both Krueger and Frandrup. However, Hale was called out for passing Frandrup on the bases to negate what would have been the fourth run of the frame.
SFA added a solo run on a leadoff home run in the bottom of the sixth inning to cut the lead to 6-4 and set up the final inning.
Offensively, Tech was led by Frandrup (2 hits, 1 RBI), Dale (HR, 2 RBI, 1 SB), Hill (2B, 1 RBI), Van Winkle (2B, 2 RBI), Harmon (1 hit) and Kipp (1 hit).
Tech improves to 39-19 all-time against Stephen F. Austin.
The victory is the third straight for the Lady Techsters as they enter this weekend's five-team Bulldog Classic hosted by Mississippi State Friday through Sunday which will feature the Lady Techsters, Mississippi State, Samford, Eastern Illinois and Columbia.