Late homer lifts UH to 3-2 softball win

June 3, 2010, 10:21 AM HST · Updated June 3, 10:21 AM
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By Fred Guzman

MauiNow.com

Hawaii has lived by the long ball all season. Today was no exception.

Traci Yoshikawa blasted a two-run homer to right-center field in the top of the seventh, giving the Rainbow Wahine a 3-2 victory over Missouri in the Women’s College World Series softball opener in Oklahoma City.

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Katie Grimes led off the UH seventh with a single to right-center and was replaced by pinch runner Dara Pagaduan. Yoshikawa then ripped the first pitch from Missouri’s Kristin Nottelmann for her 12th homer and the Rainbow Wahine’s NCAA-record 156th of the season.

Stephanie Ricketts got the Tigers in order in the bottom of the seventh for the complete-game victory, improving her personal record to 30-8 and Hawaii’s season mark to 50-14.

UH will play its second game tomorrow against UCLA or Florida at 1 p.m., Hawaii time.

Hawai’i’s Alex Aguirre hit a 2-2 pitch from Nottelmann to right-center field for a home run with one out in the second inning to give the Rainbow Wahine a 1-0 lead.

Today’s other first-round games in the double-elimination tournament will pit Pac-10 and SEC teams. UCLA (45-11) will play Florida (48-8), Arizona (48-11) will face Tennessee (47-13) and defending national champion Washington (50-7) will meet Georgia (48-11).

The event’s three-game championship series will start on Monday.

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