Larquier's Walk-off RBI Single Lifts Virginia Over Maryland, 5-4
May 12, 2005
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The Virginia Cavaliers advanced into the winner's bracket of the 2005 ACC Softball Championship with a 5-4 victory over tournament host Maryland on Thursday evening at the Terrapin Softball Complex. ACC Player of the Year Sara Larquier drove in the game winning run with one out in the bottom of the seventh to give the Cavaliers the victory. The junior third baseman went 3-for-4 in the game to lead all players.
Maryland broke through with the game's first run on a Keri Lounge RBI single to left field to score Nneka Cardoza. Cardoza started things off for the Terrapins in the top of the first as she reached base on a hit-by-pitch by Virginia starter Erin Horn. She advanced to second on a wild pitch and then went to third on a single up the middle by Crystal Tweedy. Cardoza would score two batters later on Lounge's RBI single.
Virginia would answer in the bottom half of the second to tie the game at 1-1. Whitney Holstun led off the inning with a single to center field and was replaced by pinch runner Lauren Dennis at first. Kathryn Mirras drew a base-on-ball and Brooke Sorber used a sacrifice bunt to advance Mirras and Dennis to second and third base, respectively. Jackie Greer tied the game at one with an RBI groundout to second base scoring Dennis.
The Terrapins would quickly counter in the top half of the third with two runs to take a 3-1 advantage. With the bases loaded and two outs, Crystal Rizzuto hit a ground ball which got passed Cavalier second baseman Elea Crockett plating a pair of unearned runs. Cardoza and Klein scored on the play for the Terps.
Virginia took the lead in the bottom half of the inning as the Cavaliers cleared the bases on a throwing error by Cardoza. After Crockett and Larquier reached base on back-to-back singles, Lindsey Preuss singled to first to load the bases. On the same play, Larquier rounded to far off second and was caught in a run down which led to the bases clearing throwing error by Cardoza and a 4-3 Cavalier lead.
In the top of the seventh, Cardoza led off with single up the middle but was thrown out at second on an attempted sacrifice by Tweedy. Horn then got Klein to fly out to right field for the second out of the inning. Lounge kept the Maryland hopes alive with a two-out single through the left side of the infield. Both runners would advance up a base on a wild pitch by Horn. Maryland's Nikki Smith tied the game at four with an RBI single to right field plating Tweedy. Horn closed out the inning as she induced a fielder's choice ground out at second base.
Virginia's Jessica Taylor started the bottom of the seventh with a double to the gap in left center. Crockett then laid down a sacrifice bunt, advancing Taylor to third. With one out, Larquier laced a sharp single to second base scoring Taylor for the game winner and a Cavalier 5-4 victory.
Virginia (30-30) will advance to face Virginia Tech on Friday, May 13 at 11:00 am. With the loss, Maryland (26-20) will square-off against Florida State at 5:00 pm on Friday.
L- Crystal Crews (5-8)