Softball Downs Army, 8-0, In Six Innings
Feb. 29, 2004
COLUMBUS, Ga. --Sophomore Katie Jo Kelley (Rainier, Ore.) hit a grand slam and senior KC Budrewicz (Buckland, Mass.) hit her first career home run as the University of Massachusetts softball team (3-7) mercy-ruled Army, 8-0, this morning in the consolation semifinal of the bronze medal bracket at the NFCA Leadoff Classic. UMass will now face Ohio State in the consolation championship at 1:00 p.m. this afternoon.
Junior pitchers Kelli Arnold (Kalama, Wash.) and Barb LaFogg (Williamsburg, Mass.) combined for the shutout as all three of UMass? wins this season have come via the shutout. The Minutewomen got on the board first in the third inning. Junior Hilary Puglia (Stoneham, Mass.) led off with a double, her third two-bagger in four games. She then moved to third on a single by freshman Candice Molinari (Glendora, Calif.) Molinari scooted up to second base on the throw home as well. A walk by Kelley loaded the bases with nobody out and brought up Budrewicz. She reached on a fielder?s choice. While Molinari was nipped at third, Puglia scored the games? first run. The next two batters got out though and UMass settled for just the one run.
Finally in the fourth inning, the Massachusetts offense broke out of its
eight-game slump. Junior Denise Denis (Middle Grove, N.Y.) got it started
with a one-out single and went to second on a bunt single by sophomore
Kristi Stefanoni (Columbus, N.J.). Puglia then reached on an error and Denis
scored from second base. A walk to Molinari loaded the bases and this time
UMass did not strand the runners. Kelley belted the grand slam to clear the
bases and make it 6-0 UMass. It was her third home run of the season and
second of the tournament. Budrewicz followed with a shot to right field for
her first career home run and UMass now led 7-0.
UMass then ended the game an inning early by scoring once in the bottom of the sixth and invoking the mercy-rule. Molinari got it going with a one-out single and then stole second base. After a walk to Kelley and Budrewicz strikeout, freshman Amanda Acampora (Orange, Conn.) pinch hit for senior Jamie Cahalan (Mesa, Ariz.) reached on a fielder?s choice. Molinari was able to score the Minutewomen?s eighth run of the game due to an error by Army and get the win.
Arnold pitched the first four and a third innings for the Minutewomen. She allowed no hits and no walks while striking out five. LaFogg then came in and pitched the final one and two-thirds innings. She gave up one hit and no walks.
The Minutewomen will now face Ohio State in the consolation championship game of the bronze medal championship at 1:00 p.m. The Minutewomen defeated the Buckeyes, 8-0, in the first game of the season on Feb. 13, in the Fiesta Bowl Classic in Phoenix, Ariz.