May 17, 2013
SEATTLE, WASH. - A three-run rally with two outs in the fifth inning was enough for No. 20/23 Hawai'i to advance with a 3-0 victory against Minnesota in the opening game of the Seattle Regional on Friday afternoon at Husky Softball Stadium.
Minnesota junior right-hander Sara Moulton went head-to-head in a pitchers' duel with UH left-hander Kaia Parnaby (38-5), but the fifth proved to be the deciding frame.
Hawai'i designated player Sharla Kleibenstein lined a one-out double to the wall in left center, but Moulton came back to strike out Brynne Buchanan. Minnesota then made the decision to issue an intentional walk to leadoff hitter Kelly Majam, but Moulton followed by issuing a walk to Kayla Wartner to load the bases.
Right fielder Keiki Carlos bounced a ball to the hole at shortstop that Minnesota's Tyler Walker fielded, and Kleibenstein scored on the infield single. Walker's play prevented another run from scoring, but she had no play, so the bases remained loaded and Jessica Iwata followed with a two-run single to center.
Moulton dropped to 31-11 with the loss, allowing six hits and three earned runs, while striking out six Hawai'I batters. Parnaby scattered four hits, three of them off the bat of sophomore left fielder Erica Meyer, who went 3-for-3 with her sixth double of the season in the top of the seventh.
The Gophers will now face Portland State (25-30) on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. CT. The Vikings lost, 2-1, to Washington in Friday's second game. If Minnesota would win that game, it would play an elimination game at 8:00 p.m. CT against the loser of the game between Hawai'i and Washington.
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