Softball goes 1-3 against Roadrunners, Toros

    Coming out with swinging bats, the UCSD softball team split its California Collegiate Athletic Association doubleheader with Cal State Bakersfield April 9 at the Triton Softball Stadium but were swept by Cal State Dominguez Hills on April 10.

    Billy Wong

    The Tritons (15-21 overall, 9-14 CCAA) faced tough competition against Cal State Dominguez Hills (33-7 overall, 18-4 CCAA), who defeated visiting UCSD with scores of 11-3 and 9-3.

    “Cal State Dominguez Hills was one of the best teams I’ve ever seen, with extremely powerful hits,” senior team captain and first baseman Jamie Hurst said.

    Though UCSD had a 1-0 lead in the first inning of game one, Cal State Dominguez Hills stepped up to the plate with a series of hits that culminated with a home run.

    The Tritons attempted to rally in the top of the fourth, with a single run scored, but it proved to be short-lived. Game one was curtailed by the run rule after several more powerful hits tallied up the Cal State Dominguez Hills score.

    Junior right fielder Niki Anderson led the Tritons with two hits and two RBIs scored.

    “Anderson was very consistent — she drove the hits when we needed them,” Hurst said.

    Freshman starter Melissa Ward lasted only 2.1 innings in the game-one loss.

    Game two closely mirrored the proceedings of the opener.

    The Tritons took an early 3-0 lead in the second inning, courtesy of a leadoff home run by Hurst, along with a two-RBI single up the middle by senior outfielder Breanne Cope.

    Cal State Dominguez Hills responded aggressively, sending 10 batters to the plate and bringing home five runs in their half of the inning.

    UCSD sophomore starter Tina Rowe experienced control problems in the frame, and Cal State Dominguez Hills capitalized on them by walking four times, including twice with the bases full, and benefited from a costly UCSD error to keep the inning alive.

    Though Rowe was temporarily reinvigorated after the second inning, the fifth and sixth innings were again marked by losses with four Cal State Dominguez Hills runs scored during that stretch.

    Still, freshman third baseman Jenny Maze managed to pace the Tritons with two hits, while starter Rowe threw six innings in the loss.

    After dropping game one 6-4, the Tritons made up for lost ground in game two and eventually defeated Cal State Bakersfield (25-17 overall, 13-8 CCAA) by an 11-0 margin in five innings.

    Although Cal State Bakersfield managed to get several runs in game one, the Tritons managed to step up and add some hits of their own.

    UCSD finally got one hit during the fourth inning when Maze sent a two-run shot over the center-field fence, scoring fellow freshman infielder Danielle Lukk, who reached first base earlier on an error by the second baseman.

    “[Junior] Jenny Spencer and Lukk had a huge game,” Hurst said.

    The Tritons scrambled to get two additional hits in the fifth, but could not get any closer when the UCSD rally finally fizzled out.

    Sophomore Tina Rowe allowed six runs on 10 hits in over three innings of work.

    Rowe took the loss for the Tritons and her record fell to 7-8 on the year.

    Freshman pitcher Nicole Fullerton threw brilliantly in her three and one-third innings of relief, allowing no runs on only two hits.

    Game two saw the Tritons refreshed and ready to avenge the Roadrunners’ game-one victory.

    “The second game was how we should’ve been playing all season,” Jamie Hurst said.

    Maze gave a masterful performance with a pair of singles and a walk that set the stage for her second home run of the day.

    Maze’s grand slam over the right-field fence gave the Tritons an early 4-0 lead.

    “She had a great weekend and started the rally — she played beyond her gauge,” Hurst said.

    Maze walked with one out in the third inning and would later come around to score the Tritons’ fifth run on an infield single.

    In order to clinch the game-two victory, UCSD then added six more runs in the bottom half of the fourth inning. Junior Desiree Franciscus’ two-run double to right-center was the highlight of the inning.

    In her five innings in the circle for the Tritons, Ward impressively improved to 4-6 on the season after allowing only two hits from Cal State Bakersfield in game two.

    The six runs scored by the Tritons proved to be enough, with the shutout effectively in place. The game-two shutout was so successful that the mercy rule was invoked after the Cal State Bakersfield half of the fifth inning.

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