Bettenbrock's Walk-Off Homer Give Hoosiers First Win, 7-6
Feb. 17, 2008
SAN DIEGO, Calif. - The Hoosiers only led once against the Tulsa Golden Hurricane on Sunday, but it was at the most important time of the game, the end. Tulsa had taken a 6-5 lead in the top of the seventh before Kari Bettenbrock stepped in with two outs in the bottom of the inning and sent Indiana home with a 7-6 walk-off win with her third career home run.
Tulsa (3-5) got on the scoreboard in the top of the second, sending nine hitters to the plate. The inning began with Indiana right fielder Jennifer Glueckert making a diving catch in shallow right field for the first out. The Golden Hurricane offense then mounted a two-out rally thanks to four singles and a hit batter to take the early 3-0 lead.
Indiana (1-4) started its comeback in the bottom of the third when Julia Hamilton worked a leadoff walk. She then stole second and was there with one out when Emily Bergeson drilled a two-run home run over the left field wall to trim the Tulsa lead to 3-2.
The Golden Hurricane got those two runs back in the top of fourth on an RBI triple and sharp single to left to regain their three run lead at 5-2.
In the bottom of the fourth, senior catcher Tory Yamaguchi belted her 34th career home run over the seats in left field to trim the Tulsa lead to 5-3. The home run was her first in 2008 and leaves her just four shy of the all-time Indiana home run record.
The fifth inning also belonged to IU with the top of the order providing the punch. Jennilee Huddleston led off with a single and advanced to third on a double to left center by Emily Bergeson. A wild pitch with Sarah Padove at the plate allowed Huddleston to score and trim the lead to 5-4 in favor of Tulsa.
Padove followed that up with a drive over the center fielder's head for a double and the game-tying RBI, evening the score at 5-5.
Kelli Ritchison was then brought in to pinch run for Padove and tried to score on a slow single through the right side by Brittany Devitt but a perfect throw beat her to the plate and ended the IU scoring threat, but not before the damage had been done.
The Golden Hurricane got a leadoff single and advance her to third on a fielding error by Indiana on a sacrifice bunt attempt. A wild pitch by IU starting pitcher Monica Wright allowed the go-ahead run to score, leaving the Hoosiers with three outs to get a run and force extra innings.
But the Hoosiers were up to the task. Padove laced her second double of the day to center field to put the tying run in scoring position with one out in the seventh. The next batter, Devitt just missed ending the game with a deep drive down the left field line that curved foul and wound up striking out for the second out of the inning. Kari Bettenbrock stepped in next for IU with a chance to force extra innings with a base hit.
But she did much more than that, sending the second pitch deep over the wall in center field for her third career home run and also got the Hoosiers into the win column for the first time this year.
Wright (1-1) picked up the win in the circle for Indiana, pitching her first complete game of the season. She allowed six runs, five of which were earned, on eight hits and four strikeouts.
Katie Lee (0-2) came on in the seventh and took the loss for Tulsa, giving up the home run to Bettenbrock after retiring Devitt.
The Hoosiers are now off until Feb. 29 when they travel to Chattanooga, Tenn., for the Frost Classic, where they will take on Connecticut at 9:45 a.m. in their first game.
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