May 22, 2010

ATLANTA - The University of Oregon softball team (34-20) staked its sixth appearance in the regional final Saturday morning, thanks to its 11-2, five-inning win over the tournament's eighth overall seed Georgia Tech (50-10) Saturday morning at Mewborn Field.

Freshman second baseman Kaylan Howard belted her first career grand slam in the first inning, and freshman pitcher Jessica Moore notched her 13th complete game of the season and second win of the weekend.

Moore (16-11) struck out six, walked one, and allowed both of her earned runs allowed came in the first inning.

Eight of the nine Duck hitters in the lineup batted safely, and four had multiple hits - senior centerfielder Neena Bryant (3-for-3, 2 RBI), Howard (2-for-3, 5 RBI), freshman right fielder Samantha Pappas (2-for-4, 2 RBI) and senior first baseman Carlyn Re (2-for-2).

A week after she threw her third no-hitter of the season, Georgia Tech freshman starter Hope Rush (28-7) struck out five, walked five, yielded 12 hits, and and eight of her 11 runs allowed were earned in her four-inning complete game.

Looking ahead, UO will return to play Sunday morning to play at 10 a.m., and will face the only remaining team alive in the double-elimination format after Saturday's two remaining games between Auburn (30-25), Georgia Tech and Jacksonville State (30-18). If Oregon loses that game, then the two teams will play again immediately after at 11:30 a.m. PT.

Each Duck game will be televised live by ESPN-HD, and broadcast locally on the radio by KSCR (1320-AM) with veteran Duck sportscaster Terry Jonz calling the action.

In the regional's opening day action Friday night, freshman Jessica Moore pitched her fifth shutout of the season to lift UO to a 1-0 win over Auburn. UO scored the game's only run in the sixth inning on a suicide squeeze by sophomore Kelsey Chambers that scored freshman Allie Burger who had singled to open the inning.