Auburn Softball Advances To Tiger Invitational Championship Game
February 8, 2003
Auburn, Ala.- In Auburn's second game of the day at the Tiger Invitational, the Tigers defeated the Mercer Bears, 3-0, to advance to the championship game of the tournament against Missouri, which will be played on Sunday at 1:30 p.m. at Jane B. Moore Field. . The consolation game will begin at 11 a.m.
Freshman Janet Spivey made the second start of her career and pitched a complete game shutout, allowing just two hits to go along with 11 strikeouts, including striking out six of the first 10 batters she faced.
"I was really impressed with the performance of Janet Spivey," said Auburn Head Coach Tina Deese. "I know she's talented, without a doubt, but it's tough to walk out there on that mound as a freshman for the first time at home. She had her family here, and I was really pleased, because I know she was a little nervous, but we asked her if she was ready and she said, 'I'm ready,' so she took the mound like a champ.
The Tigers got on the board first in the bottom of the first. Ashley Griffin drew a leadoff walk and Shannon Anderson reached on a fielder's choice, moving Griffin to second. After a fly out by Sara Dean, Martha Phillips walked to load the bases. Paige Jones then drove home Griffin with a groundout to short that advanced Anderson and Phillips to second and third. Anderson then scored Auburn's second run of the inning on a passed ball.
Anne Norton put Auburn on the board again in the bottom of the second by hitting the second home run of her career and second in as many days for a 3-0 lead and deciding margin.
In the first game of day two for Auburn, the Tigers faced off against the other undefeated team from day one, the Missouri Tigers and were defeated 8-3.
Auburn pitcher Kristen Keyes started the game hot, striking out seven of the first 10 batters she faced. However, she got in trouble in the top of the fourth, opening the inning with a walk and then giving up a double to Rachel McGinnis to put runners at second and third. After a foul out, Daisy Mettlach put down a bunt, which she beat out for a single, scoring Heather Kunkel. Jeni Schellert then singled home McGinnis to give Missouri a 2-0 lead.
Missouri increased its lead in the sixth inning on back-to-back doubles by Kunkel and McGinnis, scoring Kunkel. Morgan LeCluyse then got an infield single and stole second before Mettlach doubled into right field to score both runners. At that point, Keyes was relieved by Jenny Diaz who hit Schellert and walked both Kristen Burke and Kendra Power to bring home Mettlach. Schellert scored on a groundout by Sara Vassmer, and following another groundout, Kunkle returned to the plate and singled to score Burke. Power was thrown out at home on the play to end the six-run inning.
However, the Tigers battled back with three runs in the bottom half of the inning to keep the game alive. Shannon Anderson led off the inning with an infield hit, but was thrown out when Jodie Van Ooyen reached on a fielder's choice. Sara Dean then walked, and after a Paige Jones strikeout, Martha Phillips doubled to center to score Van Ooyen and Dean. Ashley Griffin followed with a single up the middle to bring home Phillips and cut the deficit to 8-3.
Keyes took the loss to fall to 1-5 on the season, pitching five innings and surrendering six runs on eight hits and a walk with nine strikeouts. Diaz finished the game, pitching two innings with two runs on one hit and two walks. Kasey Angulo got her first at bat of the season, pinch hitting for Robin Martin. She struck out looking in her first action since a preseason injury.
Day Two - Feb. 8
Auburn 3, Mercer 0
Missouri 4, UT-Chattanooga 0
Missouri 8, Auburn 3
Mercer 2, UT-Chattanooga 0
Day One - Feb. 7
Missouri 4, Mercer 2 (8)
Missouri 7, UT-Chattanooga 0
Auburn 9, Mercer 2
Auburn 4, UT-Chattanooga 1