Senior pitcher Brittany Hitchcock recorded a career-high 15 strikeouts to lead the University of Hawai'i softball team to a 3-0 shut out over Niagara on Friday night at the Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium.
The Rainbow Wahine (14–5) bounced back after yesterday’s 14-0 loss against Cal with the win over Niagara (0–4).
“Pitching-wise, it kept us in the game,” head coach Bob Coolen said. “Four hits isn’t enough to get a whole lot done, but we got three runs off of it.”
Hitchcock dominated early in the game, striking out ten consecutive batters in four innings. Hitchcock pitched the entirety of the game, only allowing two hits throughout the night.
“Some days you are just on more than others, and today was one of those days,” Hitchcock said of her performance. “My pitches were moving and they were chasing them so I was able to keep my team in the game.”
After a strong defensive game by both teams, Hawai'i’s bench helped spark a three-run fifth inning when freshman pinch hitter Mikaela Gandia-Mak hit an RBI double. Hawai'i then deployed a second pinch hitter in senior Victoria Ayala who scored Gandia-Mak with a double of her own. Senior third baseman Nicole Lopez drove home another run with an infield single to increase Hawai'i’s lead to 3–0.
Hitchcock and the UH defense would continue to hold Niagara scoreless to finish the game.
Hawai'i will return to the Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium tomorrow to play Niagara at 4 p.m. and SIUE at 6 p.m. in a double-header.