Softball Shuts Out URI 8-0 And 5-0
April 13, 2003
AMHERST, Mass. - The University of Massachusetts softball team (23-10, 6-0) upped its current winning streak to 14 games with a pair of shutouts over the University of Rhode Island (11-16, 3-6), 8-0 and 5-0, this afternoon at the UMass Softball Complex. Sophomore Kelli Arnold (Kalama, Wash.) threw her first career no-hitter in game two, while senior pitcher Kaila Holtz (North Vancouver, British Columbia) yielded just one hit in the first game.
In the first game, UMass scored an unearned run in the first inning to take an early lead. Holtz reached base via an error enabling junior Aisha Franke (Philadelphia, Pa.), who had singled earlier in the inning, to score. UMass increased its lead to 2-0 in the third when senior Brandi Cross (Diamond Bar, Calif.) homered to right-center field. The blast was her tenth of the season setting a new UMass single-season home run tally.
Franke doubled to right-center field in the bottom of the fourth inning scoring senior Anna Perey (Chino Valley, Ariz.) to put the Minutewomen up 3-0 and then they exploded for five runs in the sixth to end the game early. Cross recorded a two-RBI double to right-center field and one batter later, freshman KJ Kelley (Rainier, Ore.) ended the game with a three-run home run to right field. It was her second four-bagger of the season.
Holtz, who took a no-hitter into the fifth inning, settled for the one-hit shutout. She did not walk a batter and struck out nine.
Once again, UMass jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the first inning of game two. Cross hit her 11th home run of the season, a mamouth shot that went over the right field fair pole. UMass then added another run in the bottom of the second inning when sophomore Denise Denis (Middle Grove, N.Y.) singled to center scoring junior pinch runner KC Budrewicz (Buckland, Mass.). The Minutewomen then added another solo run in the fourth to take a 3-0 lead on a sacrifice fly to center by sophomore Hilary Puglia (Stoneham, Mass.).
Rhode Island loaded the bases on two UMass errors and a walk in the top of the sixth, but Arnold got URI short stop Gabby Zagami to ground out ending the threat. UMass added two more insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth setting up the stage for Arnold's dramatics in the seventh. She retired the Rams in order to secure her first career no-hitter. She walked two batters and struck out nine. Two other batters reached via errors.
Massachusetts will travel to Storrs, Conn. on Tuesday, April 15 for a 3:30 p.m. game with Connecticut.
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