Pacific Ends First Day With A 6-3 Win Over East Carolina
Continuing the strong performance from earlier in the day, the Pacific softball team made it a perfect 2-0 on the opening day of the Diamond Devil Invitational with a 6-3 win over East Carolina on Friday, March 9. The win for the Tigers moved their record to 12-8 on the year whie the Pirates fell to 8-11 and 0-1 at the tournament.
Just as they had done in the opening game of the day, the Tigers put together timely hits and combined it with one big bomb to put the game at the plate. After a quiet first, the Tigers sprang to life in the bottom of the second as a leadoff walk to junior Amy Moore turned into easy offense. With Moore aboard, sophomoresMegan Foglesong and Taylor Petty each roped singles, one batter apart, to post the first run of the day on the board. Two batters later, junior Megan Hom put the Tigers up two with a single through the right side that brought home Foglesong.
Leading 2-0, the Tigers looked to the middle of the order for more in the bottom of the third. After junior Nikki Armagost singled for the second time in as many trips to the plate, senior Nicole Matson doubled Pacific's tally with one swing of the bat. Facing a 3-2 count, Matson blasted an errant pitch over the center field wall to give the Tigers the 4-0 lead. The home run was the sixth of the season and 30th career round-tripper for the senior making her one of just two Tigers ever to reach 30 home runs. Additionally, the two RBI picked up on the swing moved Matson into sole possession of second place on the Tigers' all-time RBI list with 136, passing Estee Okumura (2000-03). She would tag RBI 137 in the sixth to give her three RBI on the day.
Up comfortably, Pacific tacked on runs in both the fourth and the sixth innings by taking advantage of mistakes in the field by the Pirates. Once again, the middle of the order came through as Armagost picked up her first RBI of the day in the fourth with a RBI ground out while Matson grabbed one in much the same fashion in the sixth.
With the support of her offense, sophomore Tori Shepard breezed through the game for six innings to pick up her third win of the year and even her record at 3-3. For the sophomore, the first six innings saw the Pirates pick up just three hits as Shepard kept a clean sheet on the scoreboard from the circle. However, the shutout was not to be as East Carolina used three hits, including one big fly, in the top of the seventh inning to ruin Shepard's perfect day. Despite the one rough patch at the end of the game, Shepard finished seven full innings while giving up six hits and three runs while striking out one and walking none.
Offensively, the Tigers got two hits out of both Hom and Armagost while four other Tigers added one hit each. Matson's three RBI tied for the game-high with Kai Clark of East Carolina, who tagged the Tigers with the three-run home run in the seventh.
Pacific will be back in action on Saturday, March 10, when the Tigers take on Valparaiso on the second day of the Diamond Devil Invitational. The two teams are scheduled to meet at 12:00 pm PST.