(Hawaii Athletics) - The University of Hawai'i softball team (20-16, 4-3 Big West) held off UC Santa Barbara, 3-2 in the series opener at Campus Diamond in Santa Barbara, Calif. Rainbow Wahine starter Dana Thomsen earned her third consecutive win in conference and for the second straight game, Rachel Turner provided what proved to be the winning run with a two-run home run in the third inning.
The 'Bows loaded the bases in the first inning which led to UH taking a 1-0 lead to start the game. Danielle Garcielita led the game off with a single to first. Britnee Rossi then executed a sacrifice bunt to push Garcielita to second. Nicole Lopez then laced a single which left runners at the corners. Callee Heen was then plunked to load the bases for Cheeks Ramos who lifted a sacrifice fly to center to drive in Garcielita from third for the early 1-0 lead.
In the third, Lopez reached base on an error on the third baseman and Turner later blasted her second career home run over the right-centerfield fence to give UH a 3-0 lead. For the second-straight game, Turner provided the power for the winning run.
UCSB cut into UH's lead, scoring one run in the bottom of the third on an RBI single by Alyssa Diaz that drove in Maci Fines.
The Gauchos added another run in the sixth on an RBI single by Fines that drove in Melanie Menor.
But Hawai'i held on for the 3-2 win, retiring UCSB's 2-3-4 hitters in a row in the bottom of the seventh.
Thomsen earned her third-straight complete game win. She gave up two runs on five hits with four walks and two strikeouts. She improved to 12-10 overall and 3-1 in conference.
Emily Schuttish also threw a complete game, giving up three runs on seven hits with a walk and five strikeouts.
The two teams will conclude their three-game series with a doubleheader on Saturday, April 14. First pitch is scheduled for 10:00 am HT.