May 22, 2010

STANFORD, Calif. - Home runs by senior Alissa Haber and sophomore Jenna Becerra led the 15th-ranked Stanford Cardinal to a 5-4 NCAA opening-game win over Texas Tech, Friday, at Smith Family Stadium. The Cardinal improved to 37-17 on the season while the Red Raiders dropped to 36-17.

Both Haber and Becerra hit two-run home runs to lead the Cardinal offense. Senior catcher Rosey Neill added an RBI single for Stanford.

Junior pitcher Ashley Chinn earned the win, improving to 12-8 on the year. The Belmont, Calif., native gave up three earned runs on seven hits, while striking out four batters in 7.0 innings of work. Texas Tech's Ashly Jacobs took the loss, falling to 14-9 on the season.

Stanford took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second. With two outs and a runner on-base, Haber blasted a two-run shot to right field to put the Cardinal on top. It was the sixth long ball of the season for the senior and her 33rd and 34th RBI.

The Cardinal added another run in the bottom of the fourth inning to take a 3-0 advantage over the Red Raiders. Sophomore Ashley Hansen had led off with a single to center field. The second baseman advanced to second on a wild pitch by Texas Tech's Ashley Brokeshoulder. Again with two outs, Neill singled up the middle to bring Hansen home.

The Red Raiders avoided the shutout, scoring one run in the top of the fifth. First baseman Raven Richardson scored as lead-off hitter Leah Legler grounded out to the short stop.

Stanford had an answer in the bottom half of the inning. Junior designated player Melisa Koutz drew a walk to lead off for the Cardinal. Then, first baseman Jenna Becerra hit a bomb to left field. It was her second home run of the season and second in as many games for the sophomore.

However, the Red Raiders would make a push, cutting the Cardinal lead to one. Stanford gave up three runs on four hits in the inning, but held on for a 5-4 win.

Stanford will face No. 16 seed Hawai'i, who defeated UC Davis 10-2 in five innings in the first game of the day, in the winner's bracket at 12 p.m. PT. Texas Tech will face UC Davis in an elimination game at 3 p.m. at Smith Family Stadium.