Softball: Stanford wins pitcher’s duel in 12 innings

April 2, 2010, 12:41 a.m.

In its first Pac-10 Conference game of the season, Stanford’s softball team did not fail to deliver a compelling game against cross-Bay rival California. The No. 9 Cardinal (26-4, 1-0 Pac-10) turned in a classic 12-inning pitcher’s duel that saw both teams combine for a single run. By the end, Stanford was able to pull out a 1-0 walk-off win over the Golden Bears.

The Cardinal earned the victory thanks to a heroic effort from freshman starting pitcher Teagan Gerhart. She pitched all 12 innings, an impressive feat in a sport where a normal game lasts just seven. Even more incredibly, she allowed just three hits and five walks while striking out 10 batters out of a total of 45 batters faced.

The defense behind her was also solid, giving up no errors throughout the game.

Gerhart also made an impact offensively in her four at-bats.

Indeed, Gerhart was critical to the 12th-inning rally that finally broke Cal starting pitcher Valerie Arioto. Gerhart opened the inning by hitting a single to left field off of Arioto. Sophomore center fielder Sarah Hassman then attempted to bunt Gerhart over to second base and reached first on an error by Cal third baseman Vernae Sevilla.

Next, senior left fielder Alissa Haber grounded out to second base, giving Cal its first out of the inning. However, both Hassman and Gerhart advanced on the play to second and third respectively. The next batter, sophomore second baseman Ashley Hansen, was intentionally walked to load the bases.

With the game on the line, freshman shortstop Jenna Rich came to the plate. She hit a ground ball into the infield, which the Cal fielders were unable to deliver to home plate in time. Gerhart scored on the play, giving Stanford the win in its first Pac-10 game of the year.

The Cardinal has two games remaining this weekend against the Golden Bears, both at home at Smith Family Stadium. They will take on Cal tonight at 7 p.m. and tomorrow at 1 p.m.

Kabir Sawhney is currently a desk editor for the News section. He served as the Managing Editor of Sports last volume.

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