A six-run fifth inning combined with a Danielle Lawrie one-hitter led Washington to a 9-0, five-inning victory over Northwestern Friday night at the Women’s College World Series in a game that started two hours and 47 minutes late due to thunderstorms.
Lawrie struck out 11 as she moved to 31-11 on the year. The sophomore from Canada has surrendered just one hit over two tournament games after she hurled the 16th no-hitter in WCWS annals Thursday in a 3-1 win over DePaul.
"She's our go-to gal right now. In a tournament like this, it lends to your being able to put in one pitcher and put it in the pitcher that is hot," UW head coach Heather Tarr said. "Danielle is pretty fresh right now due to the fact that she did not have to pitch every single game of our season."
Walks plagued the Wildcats in the loss, as Eileen Canney and Lauren Delaney combined to allow eight free passes in front of 7,744 fans that ranks as the second-largest crowd in series history. Canney suffered the loss to drop to 32-10 after being struck for seven runs on five hits with six strikeouts over five innings.
Walks in the third led to an RBI single Dominique Lastrapes and a run-scoring ground-out from Dena Tyson to put the Huskies up 2-0. They added to the lead in the fourth as Ashlyn Watson walked and advanced to second on a balk. Following a fly-out that moved her to third, she scored on a wild pitch to put UW on top 3-0.
The big inning, however, came in the fifth as the Huskies sent 12 batters to the plate en route to scoring the most runs in a single frame since UCLA plated six runs against Stanford in 2004. Ashley Charters led off with a double, and a walk to Marnie Koziol put runners at first and second. Another single by Lastrapes loaded the bases, and Tyson plated Charters with her base hit to left to make it a 4-0 Huskies lead.
A passed ball scored Koziol to make it 5-0, and following a Lauren Greer walk, Watson walked to plate Lastrapes. Alicia Matthews followed with a free pass of her own, scoring pinch-runner Bailey Stenson-Norman to push the cushion to 7-0.
That final walk chased Canney from the game, but Delaney didn’t fare much better as Lawrie hit a ground ball to short. Tammy Williams attempted to get the out at home, but Lauren Greer slid in just before the ball to give UW the 8-0 edge. A fielder’s choice from Charters scored Watson to make the final 9-0 margin.
The run-rule victory marked the first at the series since Fresno State knocked off Michigan 8-0 in 1998. The nine-run margin claimed the largest margin of victory since the 1995 WCWS when Arizona defeated Cal State Fullerton 11-0.
Northwestern had its chance to gain the early momentum as it put runners at second and third with not outs. Nicole Pauly doubled down the line in right and moved to third on an illegal pitch. Erin Dyer followed with a walk and promptly stole second, but Lawrie struck out the next three batters to work out of the jam and set-up the two-run third.
"I think at that moment, we needed to put the ball in play," NU head coach Kate Drohan said. "We didn't make it happen, and this is a game of momentum. They pushed that run in the next inning, and that's the game."
Washington receives Saturday off as it awaits either DePaul, Arizona State, Arizona or Tennessee Sunday at Noon CDT. Northwestern faces the winner of Texas A&M and Baylor Saturday at 8 p.m. CDT.