Softball: Wahine win in 11

Hawaii outlast Northwestern in 11 innings to stay alive in the NCAA Tournament in Austin, Texas.

AUSTIN, TEXAS - Hawai`i's Trisha Ramos' RBI single in the bottom of the 11th inning gave the Rainbow Wahine a thrilling 1-0 win against Northwestern in an elimination game in the NCAA Region 3 Tournament in Austin, Texas.

Ramos jumped on the first pitch she saw in the 11th off NU's Lauren Schwendimann (10-8) to drive home Stacey Porter from third base to propel UH into another elimination game Saturday at 8 a.m. HST against the winner of the LSU-Arizona State contest that takes place later tonight.

It was a classic pitcher's duel as Coogan (31-10) worked her way out of numerous jams throughout the game, including another bases loaded situation in the first inning for the second-straight game.

Northwestern loaded the bases in the first inning as Erin Mobley led off with a single and moved to third on consecutive ground outs. Then Coogan walked both Schwendimann and Kristen Amegin. However, Coogan induced Robyn Pettinger to ground out to short to end the threat.

NU's Schwendimann set down the first eight batters she faced until Justina Kahaku doubled down the left field line but was stranded at second.

The 'Cats again threatened in the sixth when Amegin drew a one-out walk and moved to second on Pettinger's single to right. Both runners moved up a base on Jamie Dotson's ground out to second, but Coogan got J.C. Kira to pop up to second. Northwestern mounted yet another rally in the seventh when Sheila McCorkle reached on an error by Kate Judd and moved to second on Mobley's single up the middle.

Brett Nakabayashi then popped up a bunt that resulted in UH's third triple play of the season. The bunt went to the right side of the infield in the air as a charging Porter raced up the line to snag it for out number one. The two NU baserunners thought it had hit the ground and took off to their next bases. Porter then turned and fed the ball to Noelle Izumi who stepped on first and fired over to Judd at second to record the triple play.

That's the way it stook until the 11th inning. NU collected three consecutive two-out singles to load the bases. However, Coogan retired Kira on a ground out to strand three more 'Cats on the paths.

Northwestern left 11 runners on bases, while UH had its chances as well leaving nine on base. In the bottom of the 11th, Porter finally got something to swing out after drawing two walks as she laced a one-out double to the gap in left center. She move over to third on a wild pitch to set up Ramos' clutch single for the game-winner.

Coogan's 11 innings were the longest outing of her short two-year career as she scattered nine hits, while striking out one and walking three. Her previous longest outing was 10 innings in a 4-3 win over Tulsa earlier this spring on April 17. It was her 32nd complete-game of the season and 14th shutout.

UH is 4-2 in extra-inning affairs this season. This 11-inning contest was the longest game involving UH since April 14, 2001, when UH dropped a 2-1 decision in 11 frames at Fresno State.

Hawai`i improves to 39-19 overall and 2-1 in the regional. Northwestern, which lost earlier in the day to Southwest Texas State, falls to 36-19 and is the second team eliminated in the regional along with Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, who UH sent home last night.

Next up for the Wahine is the winner of the LSU/Arizona State game.

That game can be heard live on KKEA 1420AM or on the internet at beginning at 7:45 a.m. Hawaii time on Saturday.

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