Kansas Blanks Eastern Michigan in Five, 10-0
March 8, 2013
BOCA RATON, Fla. - Senior Maggie Hull and freshmen Chaley Brickey and Alex Hugo churned out three hits apiece to lead Kansas past Eastern Michigan, 10-0, to kick-off the FAU Invitational Friday afternoon.
Kansas (15-5) racked up its 11th run-rule victory of the season, collecting 16 hits to four from Eastern Michigan (7-8). All but one of the Jayhawks' starting nine tallied at least one hit in the weekend opener, while freshman starter Kelsey Kessler (5-2) posted her second shutout of the year.
Hull recorded three hits, including her first triple of the season, while first baseman Mariah Montgomery inched closer in the RBI race. Her RBI double in the fourth gave Montgomery 120 for her career, moving her closer to Hull (124) for second on KU's career list.
The Jayhawk rookies provided the power as Brickey and Hugo each cranked out RBI doubles in the win. Brickey led the offense with her career-high three hits, going 3-for-3 with three RBIs. Hugo finished the afternoon 3-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs scored. Senior right fielder Rosie Hull also collected two hits and drove in a pair of runs to round out the KU leaderboard.
In the circle, Kessler was dominant. The freshman right-hander struck out nine and walked one in the shutout, scattering four hits throughout her five innings. After stranding runners on second and third in the bottom of the second, Kessler retired 10-straight to end the game.
Jenna Ignowski (5-1) suffered her first loss of the season for Eastern Michigan. Shortstop Katy Blaharksi led the offense with a 2-for-3 performance.
The Eagles threatened early with back-to-back singles and a one-out walk to load the bases in the bottom of the first. Kessler wouldn't have it, chalking up a pop up and a strikeout to end the inning unscathed.
Her offense gave the rookie pitcher room to work in its next trip to the plate. A walk and two bunt singles loaded the bases for Brickey, who responded with a two-run single up the middle to hand KU the 2-0 lead.
Trying to add to their lead, the Jayhawks couldn't get balls to fall their way in the top of the third. Again Kansas loaded the bases, thanks to base hits from Maggie Hull and sophomore designated player Maddie Stein. A great defensive move from Blaharski threw Hull out at the plate for the second out before Rosie Hull sent a shot right at the Eagles' third baseman for the last out of the inning - leaving the bases loaded.
Their luck changed in a big way in their next at bat. In the top of the fourth, Kansas sent 13 batters to the plate, faced three different pitchers and racked up seven runs on nine hits to blow the game open.
With two outs and only one runner on, the Jayhawks went to work - cranking out seven-straight hits to chase Ignowski from the game and eventually chase reliever Lauren Wells from the game as well, before the third out was recorded. Montgomery, junior second baseman Ashley Newman, Stein and Rosie Hull each chipped in RBIs in the seven-run frame. By the end of the inning, KU held a commanding 9-0 lead
Hugo's .RBI double in the top of the fifth wrapped up the Jayhawk scoring effort. Kessler struck out two more in the bottom half of the inning to close out the 10-0 win.
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