May 19, 2011
Box Score |
Seattle, Wash. -
Brigham Young pitcher Paige Affleck allowed just two batters to reach base over the final six innings of play and an Auburn error led to winning run as the Cougars upset No. 21 Auburn softball with a 2-1 victory in the first round of the NCAA Seattle Regional.
Auburn dropped to 39-18 overall and will play the loser of Washington vs. Portland State in an elimination game Friday at 7:30 p.m. CT. BYU improved to 39-16 and will play in the winner's bracket at 5 p.m. CT.
"We've got our work cut out for us now," Auburn head coach Tina Deese said. "We looked good coming out in the first inning, like we were going to put up a couple runs. But you have to credit their pitcher, she got stronger as the game went on and really got in a groove. We didn't put the ball in play like we did in the first inning."
Affleck improved to 25-11 with the complete-game win. Affleck allowed one run (earned) on three hits with one walk and eight strikeouts. After allowing a run in the first inning, Affleck set down 12 consecutive Auburn hitters and 18 of the final 20.
Angel Bunner (16-7) entered with two outs and the score tied in the second inning and pitched the final five and one-third innings. Bunner allowed one run (unearned) on two hits with one walk and four strikeouts in taking the loss. Jenee Loree started and went one and two-thirds innings, allowing one run (earned) on three hits with a walk and three strikeouts.
Auburn jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning with the help of two BYU miscues. Leadoff hitter Morgan Estell doubled to center and moved to third on a passed ball. With one out and Lauren Guzman at the plate, Affleck uncorked a wild pitch that bounced in the batter's box and rolled to the backstop, allowing Estell to score. Guzman continued the inning with a double to center, but the Tigers missed the chance for another when Guzman was caught too far off the bag rounding third on a single in the hole at short by Kelley Smiley.
BYU tied the game in top of the second. Caschjen Atagi doubled to open the inning and, after a strikeout and foul out, stole third. A walk to Stacie Graham put runners on the corners and Jessica Dugas followed with a single to left field to score Atagi and even the game at 1-1. The RBI single chased Loree from the game and brought Bunner in to pitch.
The Cougars took advantage of an Auburn error to take a 2-1 lead in the top of the fourth inning. Atagi led off with a single to center that Caitlin Stangl misplayed. The ball rolled to the wall and allowed Atagi to advance to third on the two-base error. Delaney Willard followed with a sac fly to deep right field that scored Atagi and gave BYU a one run edge.
The Tigers got a leadoff walk from Stangl in the bottom of the sixth inning to break a string of 12 consecutive batters retired by Affleck. Stangl was the first Tiger to reach base in the game since a single by Kelley Smiley in the first inning. Affleck, however, rebounded to retire the next three hitters and leave Stangl stranded.
In the bottom of the seventh, Affleck retired the first two hitters before pinch-hitter Morgan Murphy reached on an infield single. Affleck, however, fanned, Elizabeth Eisterhold to end the game and send the Tigers to the elimination bracket.