May 22, 2010
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - A solid outing from starting pitcher Tori Collins and an eight-hit offensive attack helped Louisville (40-18) eliminate Ball State (43-16) from the Knoxville Regional on Saturday at Lee Softball Stadium by a 5-1 score.
Collins allowed a single run on seven hits with two walks and six K's during her complete game effort in improving to 18-5. Elizabeth Milian dropped to 32-7 on the year, permitting just one earned run on eight hits with three walks and four strikeouts in taking the tough defeat from the circle.
After Louisville left a runner stranded during the top of the first, Ball State jumped on UL hurler Tori Collins right from the start in the bottom half. BSU got consecutive base knocks to begin the frame from third baseman and lead-off hitter Jessie Ware, center fielder Lisa Rozanski and shortstop Alicia Barkley. On the latter single, Ware raced around third in an attempt to score but was gunned down at the plate on a strong throw by Louisville right fielder Vanessa James to register a big first out. With runners occupying second and third following the play at home, left fielder Amanda Carpenter lifted a sacrifice fly deep enough to score Rozanski as Ball State nabbed a 1-0 advantage.
In the top of the third, Louisville dead locked the score at 1-1 on doubles from both James and catcher Melissa Roth. Then UL took advantage of an error on a slow roller to the circle in the top of the fourth to nab its first lead at 2-1 on a two-out RBI single by first baseman Alicja Wolny.
With UL hurler Collins holding Ball State in check, retiring nine of 10 batters at one stretch from the fourth through the sixth frames, the Louisville offense added some valuable insurance on the scoreboard in the top of the seventh with the assistance of two BSU errors. Left fielder Jennifer Esteban reached leading off the frame on a throwing miscue by the shortstop, advanced to second on an infield single from right fielder Vanessa James and soon scored as center fielder Kristin Austin reached on a bunt as BSU third baseman Jessie Ware threw the ball wide for an error at first. A sacrifice fly by second baseman Jordan Trimble and a double to right from shortstop Colby Wherry brought home two more Louisville runners for a 5-1 lead.
Ball State made it interesting during the bottom half of the seventh, posting two base knocks in the frame. Right fielder Alyssa Collins started the inning with a single but was thrown out attempting to stretch the single into a double. That definitely cost BSU a run as Kate Wilczynski followed with a two-bagger to left center. She eventually ended up at third and was joined via walk by teammate Meredith Nash. Collins closed out her complete-game effort from the circle, however, by striking out catcher Sadie Robertson to eliminate Ball State and send Louisville on to battle Virginia at 6:45 p.m. ET for the right to face Tennessee on Sunday for the Knoxville Regional title.