Softball Advances At Regionals With Win Over Notre Dame|
May 22, 2004
Ann Arbor, Mich. - Freshman Tonya Maosi's run-scoring, infield single in the bottom of the sixth inning advanced the UIC softball team at the NCAA Region VI Championships on Saturday afternoon as the seventh-seeded Flames edged #4 Notre Dame, 2-1, at Alumni Field.
UIC (41-22) now moves on to meet the winner of #2 Tennessee and #5 DePaul later this evening. Notre Dame, which is ranked 25th nationally, ends its season with a record of 49-20.
Senior pitcher Alison Aguilar went the distance for the Flames for her second all-time regional victory. She allowed one run on five hits while striking out seven to move to 16-8 on the year.
Notre Dame's Heather Brown (25-9) came up on the short end of the one-run decision, despite not allowing an earned run while limiting UIC to just three hits.
Trailing 1-0 heading into the bottom of the sixth, the Flames capitalized on three Irish (49-20) errors and got a clutch hit from Maosi to to take the lead.
Sophomore Michelle Miller led off the sixth with an infield hit. Junior Sara Hernandez attempted to sacrifice her to second, but the Irish would force her out. Notre Dame then attempted to turn the double-play, but shortstop Sara Schoonaert's throw was wild and rolled into the dugout allowing Hernandez to reach second.
Senior Amanda Rivera followed with a pop fly on the infield, but Schoonaert and second baseman Stephanie Brown collided, which dislodged the ball from Schoonaert's glove.
The Irish's fielding miscues continued with the next Flames batter as Alycia Creese's grounder bounded off third baseman Liz Hartaman's glove and into centerfield, allowing Hernandez to score all the way from first to even the score at 1-1. Rivera also advanced to third and Creese to second on the play.
After Notre Dame starter Heather Booth retired Nicole Shepard, Maosi rocket one down the third base line that was knocked down by Hartmann. She was unable to throw out Maosi at first and Rivera, who got a good break on the ball, scored without a throw.
Aguilar retired the Irish in order in the seventh to seal the win.
For the third straight game in regional play, the Flames allowed a run in the first inning as Mallorie Lenn's two-out, RBI double off Aguilar gave the Irish a 1-0 lead.