Cullum Drives In Winning Run in KU's 7-6 Extra-Inning Victory
March 6, 2011
LAS VEGAS, Nev. –
Freshman Kendra Cullum hit a single up the middle in the top of the eighth inning to drive in what became the game-winning run as Kansas defeated Troy 7-6 in a come-from-behind victory Saturday night.
Trailing 5-2 after six complete innings, senior Brittany Hile smashed a grand slam over the left field wall in the top of the seventh to give KU a 6-5 edge. Unfortunately, Troy’s Nikki Hollett hit a solo round-tripper in the bottom of the frame to knot the score and send the game into extra innings.
With the international tie-breaker rule in effect, freshman Ashley Newman started the eighth inning on second base. Junior Marissa Ingle advanced Newman to third with a sacrifice bunt to set up Cullum for the game-winning RBI hit.
“We got down early and could have easily folded but we’re fighters and we fought back,” said head coach Megan Smith. “Kristin Martinez came in and shut them down. Brittany Hile came up big and so did Kendra Cullum in a pressure situation so we’re very proud of them.”
KU rebounded from an earlier loss to UNLV Saturday as the Jayhawks improved to 16-3 overall, while Troy dropped to 11-6 on the season. Kansas is 2-2 after two complete days of the UNLV Eller Media Stadium Classic and will wrap up the weekend when it takes on San Diego at 12:15 p.m. Central Sunday, March 6.
Freshman pitcher Kristin Martinez took over from the circle in the fourth inning for senior starter Allie Clark and proceeded to shut down the Trojans’ offense. After recorded nine hits in the first three innings, Troy managed just three hits and one run over the final five frames as Martinez also collected three strikeouts and improved to 8-1.
The Jayhawks had just one hit through the first five innings but engineered two runs on three hits in the top of the sixth before its big seventh inning production.
Freshman Alex Jones led Kansas with three hits while sophomore Mariah Montgomery also had multiple hits with two. KU had nine total hits in the game, including Hile’s grand slam, the second of her career and eighth home run of the season.
Kansas softball could not cool the hot bats of UNLV Saturday afternoon as the Jayhawk softball team was defeated 10-1 in day two of the Eller Media Stadium Classic.
UNLV (10-7) started the game with two runs in the bottom of the first inning on four hits and then gained momentum to pull away with six more tallies in the third. The Rebels also took advantage of three walks and two hit by pitches in the frame to take an 8-0 lead.
Montgomery drove in Kansas’ lone run of the contest with a single in the top of the fourth inning. Her shot up the middle plated senior Brittany Hile, who led off the inning with a double to deep left-center field, her third-straight game with a two-base hit.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Hile caught a runner stealing and then the Jayhawks earned out number two through a force out at third base but the Rebels managed to load the bases and score two more runs before the third out to give UNLV its final score of 10-1 in the shortened, five-inning game.
Freshman Kristin Martinez threw the first two innings to suffer the loss, her first of the year, as she fell to 7-1. Junior Ashley Spencer tossed the final two innings of the contest giving up four of the Rebels’ 11 hits.