Kaia Parnaby threw a three-hit shutout as No. 20 Hawaii beat Minnesota 3-0 Saturday at the University of Washington’s Husky Softball Stadium to remain alive in the NCAA tournament’s Seattle Regional.
In earlier action at the double-elimination tournament, No. 11 Washington beat Hawaii 2-0 while Minnesota defeated Portland State 5-0 in an elimination game.
At 10 a.m. today, Washington (40-15) will play Hawaii (45-12) in the first of two possible title games. The Rainbow Wahine must beat the Huskies in order to force the second game, which would take place at 12:30 p.m.
The regional champion advances to a super regional next week.
Parnaby, a hard-throwing southpaw from Australia, improved to 39-6 by beating Minnesota for the second time in as many days.
Parnaby struck out four, hit a batter and didn’t walk anyone, outdueling Minnesota ace Sara Moulton (32-11).
Moulton struck out 10 and walked one after throwing a one-hit shutout against Portland State in which she struck out 13.
The Golden Gophers finished their season at 36-19.
Hawaii scored two runs in the top of the third inning on Kayla Wartner’s two-run triple and added to the lead on a solo home run by Leisha Liilii.
Jessica Iwata and Alyssa Villalpando each had two hits to lead the Rainbow Wahine.
“We came out with a little more fortitude and needed to attack the pitchers,” Hawaii coach Bob Coolen said. “It was nice to get those early runs.”
Parnaby will have less than 24 hours to get ready for Washington again. Coolen is confident Parnaby will be ready for the challenge.
“Right now, it’s the Kaia Show, and everybody is riding her back,” he said.
c Washington 2, Hawaii 0: Kaitlin Inglesby pitched a two-hit shutout, outpitching Parnaby in a winners bracket game earlier Saturday.
Inglesby (22-6) struck out nine and walked one, using an effective fastball and clever change-up to keep the Rainbow Wahine off-balance throughout the game.
Parnaby, who also went the distance, struck out four and walked four while giving up six hits.
The Huskies scored their two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Inglesby walked and was replaced by pinch runner Jerrin Faasua, who then scored on an RBI double by Kylee Lahners. She later scored on a Jennie McNeill single to make it 2-0.
Keiki Carlos and Sharla Kliebenstein had Hawaii’s base hits.
Hawaii opened the regional Friday with a 3-0 win over Minnesota (39-18) while host Washington topped Portland State 2-1.