HONOLULU – Oregon starter Cheridan Hawkins and James Madison pitcher Kailyn Ford, USA Junior National Team teammates over the summer, locked horns through seven innings on Friday afternoon, but the Ducks won the pitchers’ duel, 1-0, in the third day of the Pepsi Rainbow Wahine Classic.
The Ducks (21-2) scored one run on eight hits with no errors while the Dukes (17-9), who received votes in his week’s NFCA top-25 poll, tallied no runs on three hits with one crucial error.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, freshman Nikki Udria doubled to left center. After a popout, Udria stole third and in the process, the catcher’s throw sailed high and into the outfield, allowing Udria to trot home for the game-winning run.
Hawkins posted her 10th complete game and seventh shutout of the season in the Ducks’ sixth straight win. The sophomore lefty kept a clean sheet with three hits allowed plus five strikeouts and one walk.
Hawkins retired the side in order in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings. She gave up a two-out triple in the first but forced a popout to end the inning.
She also gave up a two-out single in the seventh, and after a stolen base, she struck out a pinch hitter swinging to shut the door.
Ford, the Colonial Athletic League rookie of the year a season ago, finished with one run allowed (unearned) on eight hits with one walk and four strikeouts.
Oregon will meet host Hawai’i later today in the second game of a doubleheader for the Ducks.