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Here Comes the Boom---DePaul Wins Fifth in a Row
Kirsten Verdun was 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBIs in a 13-2, five-inning victory over Weber State.

Kirsten Verdun was 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBIs in a 13-2, five-inning victory over Weber State.

March 1, 2013

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LAS VEGAS - DePaul turned up the power Friday afternoon at the Eller Media Stadium Classic.

Back-to-back home runs by Kirsten Verdun (two-run shot) and Megan Coronado paved the way to a 13-2, five-inning victory over Weber State.

It was the Blue Demons' fifth win in a row and second on the day.

Verdun headed up the robust attack going 3-for-4 with the home run and four RBIs. The junior first baseman struck the first big blow with the two-run shot over the center-field fence in the top of the first inning right after Allie Braden's one-out double---her fourth consecutive hit on the day.

"I was a little concerned about my hitting," Verdun said. "Hopefully I'm coming out of a little slump I've been in. (Assistant coach) Samantha Findlay talked to me about taking a better approach at the plate. She wanted me to be more aggressive on good pitches. I took less pitches today and hit the good ones that came across."

Coronado followed Verdun with a blast that cleared the right-field fence.

"Those home runs helped take the pressure off starting pitcher Hannah Penna and our defense," Verdun said. "It's good to start strong, and we did that in both games today."

Weber State (0-9) scored a pair of unearned runs in the bottom of the inning, but the Blue Demons came right back with a run in the second inning. Gena Lenti singled to right, advanced to second on Samantha Dodd's walk and scored her first collegiate run on a Verdun single to left.

DePaul (10-7) put this one out of reach scoring four runs in the fourth inning and five more in the fifth.

Mary Connolly's RBI double and a Verdun RBI single highlighted the four-run outburst. The Blue Demons parlayed two hits, two walks, a hit-by-pitcher and an error into the five-spot.

"We had a lot of quality at-bats in both games," said DePaul coach Eugene Lenti as the Blue Demons opened up with a 6-1 victory over New Mexico State on Friday morning. "We hit a lot of home runs today---Mary Connolly's grand slam and Allie Braden's solo shot in the first game and two more in the second game.

"It's important to score early, and we did that in both games. Against Weber State, all of our players off the bench also did a good job. We kept putting the ball in play, they made four errors and we kept pouring it on."

Verdun was ready to keep it going.

"I hope this is the beginning of a turnaround for me with RBIs," she said. "It's not that I feel any extra pressure, but I know that's my role---to drive in runs.

"I've been struggling a little offensively, and I know my teammates count on me for RBIs. I hope the approach I took at the plate today stays that way."

The Blue Demons return to Eller Media Stadium for a 1:15 p.m. game Saturday against Cal State Northridge.

NOTES: DePaul outscored its two opponents on Friday by a combined score of 19-3... against Weber State, Gena Lenti recorded her first collegiate run and first RBI... Marsha' Pendilton scored the first run of her collegiate career... Ali Lenti and Amanda Mener each scored their first run of the season... the first-time runs for Pendilton, Ali Lenti and Mener along with Gena Lenti's first RBI all took place in the fifth inning... overlooked in all the offense was pitchers Hannah Penna (four innings) and Morgan Maize combining on a one-hitter... in addition to Verdun, Gena Lenti was 2-for-4 with two runs and an RBI while Connolly was 1-for-2 with an RBI... Coronado was 1-for-2 with a home run, RBI and two runs... Braden was 1-for-2 and scored three times... Kali Gardner had a base hit and Verdun, Mener, Pendilton, Ali Lenti and Cherelle Chambers each scored a run... Penna held Weber State to one earned run on one hit in four innings with three strikeouts and one walk... in 12 innings on Friday, DePaul's pitchers gave up just one walk... on the day, Braden was 4-for-5 with five runs, a homer and an RBI... Verdun was 4-for-7 with four RBIs, a home run and a run scored... Connolly was 2-for-5 with five RBIs, a grand slam and one run... Coronado was 2-for-5 with three runs, a home run and one RBI... Gena Lenti was 3-for-5 with two runs and an RBI.