April 21, 2006
FRESNO, Calif. - The No. 23 Fresno State softball team picked up a 5-1 Western Athletic Conference win over Hawai'i to move a half game up and take over the top spot in the league standings.
Freshman right hander Robin Mackin threw a three-hitter, walked two and struck out seven to improve to 22-8 on the season. Needing two strikeouts entering the game to hit 300 on the year, she reached that plateau in the first inning and surpassed it in the second to increase her season total to 305. As a result, Mackin became the sixth Bulldog hurler to post a 300-strikeout season.
While Fresno State banged out 10 hits, the Bulldogs' offense came from the middle of the line up as the No. 2-6 batters each collected a RBI.
The 'Dogs struck first with a run in the first. With one out and a runner on, freshman designated player Merryann Barr singled to left field to put runners on first and second. Sophomore first baseman Kristin Sylvester hit a double to right to plate freshman third baseman Haley Perkins, who reached via walk.
In the third, senior All-America shortstop Christina Clark doubled to left center to start the inning off. Perkins then doubled to left center to score Clark.
In the fifth, Clark led the inning off with a walk and Perkins also was walked to put two runners on. After Barr hit into a fielder's choice, forcing Perkins out a second, the Bulldogs had runners on the corners with one out. Sylvester drew a walk to load the bases before junior catcher Nichole Willis collected a RBI with a single up the middle as Clark scored. Mackin then answered with a RBI single to left to score senior Daisy Gaynor, who pinch ran for Barr.
Hawai'i starter Justine Smethurst was pulled after giving up a RBI single to Mackin. Relieving Smethurst was Paula Blanning, who halted the scoring threat by the Bulldogs.
In the sixth, junior center fielder Shannon Garvin singled to right field and Clark singled through the left side before Perkins loaded the bases with a single to right. With the bases loaded, Barr drew a walk to collect the fifth run for Fresno State.
In the seventh, the Rainbow Wahine picked up a run courtesy of a Bulldog fielding error. First baseman Tyleen Tausaga led the inning off with a double down the left field line. After Mackin got the next two outs, catcher Kristi Yoshizawa reached on an error by Sylvester that allowed UH to post a run.
Smethurst took the loss and dropped to 11-9 overall after allowing four runs on seven hits with four walks and two strikeouts in 4.1 innings of work. Blanning scattered three hits, allowed a run, walked one and struck out two in 1.2 innings of work.
Fresno State (29-13, 7-1 WAC) continues its three-game conference series with Hawai'i (23-15, 7-2 WAC) tomorrow afternoon with a 1:00 p.m. doubleheader.
Saturday is filled with activities as it is Senior Day, Fan Appreciation Day and Youth Softball Day. Fresno State will honor its four seniors -- Clark, Gaynor, Laura Ferreira and Katrina Jacques in a pre-game ceremony. Fans will have opportunities to win prizes throughout the doubleheader, including a chance to win a MP3 player. In addition, youth will be given a set of the 2006 Fresno State softball trading cards upon entering Bulldog Diamond.
Single-game tickets for tomorrow's doubleheader can be purchased online at www.gobulldogs.com or through the Bulldog Ticket Office at (559) 278-3647.
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