HONOLULU—The University of Hawai’i softball team shut out UC Riverside, 2-0 in the Big West series opener on Friday night. The Rainbow Wahine improved to 24-14 overall and 3-4 in conference, while the Highlanders fell to 20-16 overall and 2-5 in the BWC. UH’s Brittany Hitchcock fired her seventh complete game shutout to improve to 15-7 for the season.
It was a pitcher’s duel between Hitchcock and UCR’s pitchers Haley Marschall and Taylor Misfeldt. Both teams came away with four hits apiece in the game. Hitchcock scattered four hits with no walks and four strikeouts. She did not allow a runner to reach third base for the sixth time this season and for the ninth time in 2017 she did not issue a walk in an appearance.
In the top of the first, UC Riverside threatened to score, putting runners at first and second with just one out. But the ‘Bows escaped unscathed getting a flyout to centerfield and a groundout to first to end the frame. With that, UH snapped their six-game streak of allowing at least one unearned run in the first inning.
Hawai’i loaded the bases in the second inning and scratched out one run to take an early lead. Callee Heenreached on a fielder’s choice that erased pinch runner Courtney Hiruko out at second. Angelique Ramosthen reached on a fielding error on the third baseman and Ulu Magagiese followed with a looping single over the first baseman to load the bases. Heather Cameron then drilled an opposite-field single to right to drive in Heen from third. The Highlanders however got out of the inning with a flyout to left and a groundout back to the pitcher.
In the fourth Ramos led off the frame by launching a home run over the centerfield fence to give Hawai’i a 2-0 lead. It marked the rookie shortstop’s fifth home run of season.
That would be all Hitchcock and the UH defense would need to earn the win. The defense got two double plays in the game—a 5-4-3 groundout double play started by Nicole Lopez in the second inning and a game-ending double-play by Morales who snagged a soft-liner and stepped on first to finish the game.
UC Riverside’s Marschall took the loss, evening her record to 6-6 on the season. She allowed two runs on four hits with a walk in 3.1 innings of work. Misfeldt threw the final 2.2 innings. She held the ‘Bows hitless and did not allow any runs with one walk.
The win snapped UH’s three-game losing streak with their 24th win of the season—tying their win total for all of 2016. team
The two teams will square off in a series ending doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 2:00 p.m. at the Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium.