Barrow Hits UCF Softball Past Connecticut


March 10, 2010

Box Score

UCF vs. Connecticut
March 10, 2010
Orlando, Fla. (UCF Softball Complex)
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
UConn 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 3 3
UCF 0 0 3 1 1 0 x 5 5 0

Game Notes
? WP: UCF - Ashley Schmitt (1-0)
? LP: UConn - Kiki Saveriano (2-3)
? Tiffany Lane added to her Conference USA record for career triples with her three-bagger in the fifth inning Wednesday. In only her third year at UCF, Lane has 21 triples.
? Diana Rojas's pinch-hit RBI single in the fourth inning was her first hit of 2010.
? With the win over the Huskies, the Knights have now won seven of its last eight contests, which includes a 6-1 record in the month of March.
? UCF opens Conference USA play this weekend when Memphis comes to the UCF Softball Complex. The three-game series opens Friday with a 5:30 p.m. match-up, before playing a 12 p.m. doubleheader Saturday. The first 150 fans through the gate will receive a free UCF softball t-shirt.

ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - Senior Hillary Barrow (Miami, Fla.) went 2-for-3 with a home run, a double, three RBI and two runs scored to help the UCF softball team to a 5-1 drubbing of visiting Connecticut Wednesday afternoon at the UCF Softball Complex.

"I was just looking for a pitch I knew I could drive somewhere," Barrow said of the home run. "I fought off a couple balls at the end, but as soon as she came inside on me I took it out of the park. In the last couple games I have been feeling pretty confident at the plate and I think that showed in that at bat."

The win improved the Knights record to 13-9 on the season, with the squad winning eight of its last nine contests. In the month of March, the Black and Gold is a nearly-flawless 6-1.

On the opposite side of the field, junior Ashley Schmitt (Tampa, Fla.) had a lot to prove in her first start in the circle as a Knight against the Huskies, and the Santa Fe Community College transfer handled the pressure well. Schmitt held UConn to only one run on three hits in a complete-game outing to earn her first career victory.

"It was very exciting to get the start today," Schmitt said. "I felt good out there and I knew my defense had my back the whole time."

"I really liked Ashley's performance against Maine last night, and I felt that she had the focus and confidence to take on UConn today," Renee Luers-Gillispie said. "We are excited that she could start and finish that game for us. She did a great job keeping her composure on the mound even after she got rattled a little in the third inning. I think Hillary's third-inning home run rallied the bats and gave Ashley the support she needed to complete that game."

Besides Barrow, a pair of juniors came up big for the home team on the offensive side of the ball, as both Tiffany Lane (Moreno Valley, Calif.) and Diana Rojas (Miami, Fla.) posted a hit and a RBI in the contest. Lane hit a RBI triple in the fifth inning to extend her Conference USA record to 21 career triples, while Rojas drove in a run in the fourth inning with her first hit of the year, a single to left field.

"I don't really get a lot of at bats, so when Coach Gillispie told me that I was going in to pinch hit, all I was thinking was that I wanted to get a hit," Rojas said. "I take cuts all the time at practice, so I think the coaching staff knew I could get the job done."

After falling down by one run in the third inning on a UConn home run, the Knights rallied back in the bottom of the frame to plate three runs and take a two-score advantage. With two outs, Abby McClain (Waterloo, Iowa) reached on an error by UConn's third baseman and advanced to second on a single through the right side of the infield by Natalie Land (Mayo, Fla.). Barrow then dug into the batter's box and blasted a three-run shot over the left-centerfield wall to put her team in the lead.

UCF would tag on another run in the fourth inning on a pinch-hit RBI single by Rojas. The inning started when Marissa Menendez (Tampa, Fla.) reached on a throwing error by the Huskies' pitcher and advanced to second on the play. A sacrifice bunt by Mary Helen Tyler (Marianna, Fla.) moved her to third base, before Rojas knocked her in with her first hit of the season to left field.

The scoring would continue for the Black and Gold in the fifth inning, with Barrow cranking out a two-out double to centerfield, before Lane hit her around with her 21st career triple.

The four-run cushion would prove to be enough, as Schmitt and the Knights' defense held on for the victory.

UCF continues its 17-game homestand this weekend when it hosts Memphis in its first Conference USA series of 2010. The teams will begin the three-game series with a 5:30 p.m. contest Friday, before squaring off in a 12 p.m. doubleheader Saturday at UCF Softball Complex.

Season tickets for the 2010 season are only $40 and are on sale now, while single-game tickets are also available for purchase. Tickets can be purchased online at UCFAthletics.com or through the Athletics Ticket Office by calling (407) 823-1000.

For the latest news on the Knights, log on to www.UCFAthletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. The site, which also contains ticket and Golden Knights Club donor information, is also the home of UCF's new online apparel store. Also visit www.UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.