Feb. 15, 2002
RALEIGH, N.C. - Miami's softball team opened the 2002 season in splendid fashion Friday at the UNC Triangle Classic in Raleigh, N.C., holding on for a 7-6 win in its season-opener against Virginia Tech, 7-6, then playing catch-up in a 7-4, eight-inning victory over Elon. It is the first time since 1993 it has begun the season 2-0.
The RedHawks take on North Carolina at 1 p.m. Saturday in the first round of bracket play.
Miami wasted little time getting on the board against the Hokies. After senior Keri Brisnehan (Englewood, Colo./Cherry Creek) walked to lead off the first inning and sophomore Jamie Carey (Pendleton, Ind./Pendleton Heights) followed with a bunt single, junior Angie Gerber (La Salle, Mich./Mason) crushed a three-run homer to left-centerfield to give the RedHawks the early lead.
Virginia Tech answered with a run of its own in the bottom of the frame on an RBI infield single by Clarisa Crowell, then added two more in the second on back-to-back RBI doubles Carmen Farmer and Sarah Prosise to tie it at 3-3.
Miami regained the lead in the third when a fielder's choice by freshman Jackie Poggendorf (Phoenix, Ariz./Shadow Mountain) scored Carey, who reached on an error to lead off the inning. The next inning it got what turned out to be some much-needed insurance on run-scoring singles by Carey and Gerber and an RBI sacrifice fly by sophomore Jacque Molinaro (Follansbee, W.Va./Brooke).
The Hokies' Amy Voorhees made things interesting in the seventh when she hit a towering three-run blast to left to cut the deficit to 7-6, but starter Poggendorf retired the next two batters to close it out and earn the win in her collegiate debut.
Gerber was Miami's offensive star in the game, going 3-for-4 with four RBIs. Carey, Poggendorf and senior Nicki Pelfrey (Fremont, Ohio/Fremont Ross) had two hits apiece, while Carey and senior Keri Brisnehan (Englewood, Colo./Cherry Creek) each scored twice.
Miami played a little role reversal in its second game as Elon's Pam Brock ripped a three-run double in the first inning, then came around to score on successive wild pitches to stake the Phoenix to an early 4-0 advantage.
The RedHawks put three on the board in the second on a Poggendorf RBI single, an RBI double by junior Erin Kucera (Littleton, Colo./Chatfield) and a fielder's choice by freshman Peri Zakin (Atlanta, Ga./Woodward Academy) that plated Poggendorf.
They then tied it at 4-4 in the fifth when Carey singled, stole second, advanced to third on Gerber's groundout and scored on Pelfrey's sac fly.
It stayed that way through the seventh, so the teams went to international tie-breaker rules, in which each half-inning starts with a runner placed on second base. With two outs in the top of the eighth, Pelfrey, after being sacrificed to third on a bunt by Molinaro, scored the eventual winning run when Zakin hit a slow roller to short and beat it out. Brisnehan sealed the deal later in the inning with a two-run single.
Poggendorf pitched two innings of two-hit, shutout relief to earn her second win in as many games.
Against Elon, eight different players had a hit for Miami, while Brisnehan and Zakin each drove in two runs and Pelfrey crossed the plate twice.