The University of Hawai'i softball team (17-20, 1-3 Big West) fell in their Big West home opener to CSUN, 7-4 on Friday night. Brittany Hitchcock suffered the loss, dropping her record to 7-10 overall and 1-2 in conference, while the Matadors' Daphne Pofek earned the win to improve to 9-4 overall and 2-0 in the BWC.
The Matadors (22-16, 2-2 Big West) started the game with a bang, scoring two quick runs. Leadoff hitter Savannah Horvath led off the game with a single up the middle. She stole second and moved to third on an error off a muffed throw at first off a grounder to third by Taylor Glover. Horvath then scored on a single that was laced past a diving third baseman and shortstop by Karlie Habitz. Glover later scored on a groundout to short for the early 2-0 lead.
Hawai'i tried to answer in the bottom of the first, with Sarah Muzik and Heather Morales reaching on singles, but the Matadors got a swinging strike out to snuff out UH's rally.
In the bottom of the third inning, the 'Bows loaded the bases with a Nicole Lopez single, a Keiki Carlos double to the left-centerfield gap, and a walk to Heather Morales with two outs. Rachel Lack followed by launching a grand slam over the right-centerfield fence to give UH a 4-2 lead. It marked Lack's fifth home run of the season and the first grand slam of her career. It was the first grand slam for the 'Bows this season as well.
CSUN knotted the score at 4-4 in the top of the fifth on a two out, two-run home run by Ariana Wassmer over the leftfield fence.
The Matadors loaded the bases with one out and got one run on a groundout to short to take a 5-4 lead in the top of the sixth. CSUN extended their lead to three runs in the top of the seventh when two runners scored off a throwing error to home by the first baseman to give the Matadors a 7-4 lead going into the last half inning of play.
UH tried to rally in the bottom of the seventh, with Muzik reaching on a single and Carlos drawing a two-out walk, but the Matadors got a fielder's choice on a grounder to second base who flipped to short for the final out to end the game.
Hitchcock fired her ninth complete game of the season in a losing effort. She gave up seven runs—four earned—on 11 hits with no walks and three strike outs.
CSUN's Pofek, gave up four runs on six hits with two walks and six strike outs for the complete game win.
The two teams will square off in a series-ending doubleheader on Saturday starting at 2:00 pm. It is Military Appreciation Day at the Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium and the Marine Corps Band of the Pacific will be on hand for pre-game entertainment and Brigadier General Suzanne Vares-Lum will be throwing out the first pitch.
Hawaii Athletics Release
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