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Shirah's Homer Lifts Softball

Feb. 23, 2003

Final Stats

BOCA RATON, FL -- What was a pitching dual for seven innings turned into a slugfest in the final inning as Florida Atlantic University defeated the University of Wisconsin, 3-2, Sunday morning in Boca Raton. Michelle Shirah hit a game-winning three-run homer in the bottom of the eighth to give FAU (9-9) the dramatic come-from-behind victory. The two teams were playing in the fifth-place game at the FAU "Worth" Invitational.

Neither team was able to generate any offensive production through the first seven innings. Wisconsin (6-7) had outhit FAU 5-2 heading into the eighth inning before the international tiebreaker took effect.

In the top of the eighth, Emily Friedman was placed at second and advanced to third on a sacrifice. With two outs, Kristin Zacher blasted a two-run homer to left field to give the Badgers a 2-0 lead.

In the bottom of the inning, Ebony Gray was placed at second and Amy Bellisari drew a walk. That brought up Shirah, who was battling a 1-for-24 slump to start the season. She swung at the first pitch and hit a high fly ball to left that carried over the fence to win the game for FAU. It was Shirah's first homer of the season.

Candice Freel (5-2) picked up the win. The sophomore allowed two runs on six hits and struck out five. Andrea Kirchberg suffered the loss, allowing three runs on three hits.

The win improves FAU to 3-0 in extra inning games this season and was the Lady Owls' second in as many days against Wisconsin.

Florida Atlantic next plays Maryland, March 6, in the first round of the USF "Speedline" Invitational in Tampa, FL.



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