No. 3 Duck Softball Tops Cougars in NCAA Regional Opener, 5 – 2

EUGENE – The No. 3 University of Oregon softball team (47-9) stayed perfect in NCAA Regional play under fourth-year head coach Mike White with its 5-2 win Thursday evening over BYU (33-24) at Howe Field.

Pac-12 Pitcher of the Year Jessica Moore (26-4) cruised to her 12th complete game of the season and raised her career regional postseason record to 9-0.
The senior from Sutter, Calif., struck out a season-high 12 batters – two better than her previous best vs. SDSU in late February – and tied the ninth-best Duck mark in a game.

In the first inning, junior DP Alexa Peterson put the Ducks ahead with a three-run homer.  The shot into the left field bleachers was her 12th of 2013 and moved her into a tie for eighth all-time in a season for the Ducks.

“Getting off to a three run start was great,” Oregon head coach Mike White said, “and it got the jitters out early.  This time of year we need to capitalize on our opportunities and then use our pitching and defense to win the game.”

Earlier Thursday afternoon at Howe Field, North Carolina (40-19) beat Big Ten Tournament champion and No. 25 Wisconsin (42-12) in 8 innings, 3-2.

Looking ahead to Friday, the Tar Heels will face the Ducks at 11 a.m. in the day’s opener, and the Cougars play the Badgers at 2 p.m.  The winner of that second game will face the loser of the Oregon-UNC game at 5 p.m.

Saturday’s final-day action starts at noon between the remaining teams alive in the double-elimination format, and a second, if-necessary game would follow at 3 p.m.

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