SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- Sacramento State wrapped up its final day of the Mustang Classic Softball Tournament on Sunday with a 6-5 loss to Bryant, followed by a 1-0 loss in eight innings to tournament host Cal Poly.
Both losses were of the gut wrenching variety as the Hornets had a base runner thrown out for the final out in the seventh inning against Bryant, and a two-out throwing error in the eighth inning against Cal Poly allowed the game-winning run to score.
With the losses, Sacramento State (7-11 overall) wraps up tournament play with a 2-2 record, including victories over San Diego and IUPUI yesterday. Each of the Hornets' last five games have been decided by two runs or less, and 12 of the team's 18 games overall this season have been decided by two runs or less.
With the victories, Bryant improved to 5-6 and Cal Poly to 10-14. The Hornets' Alexa Chattleton, who is now hitting a team-best .382, was the lone Hornet to hit safely in both games.
Sacramento State pounded out a season-high 16 hits, but stranded 12 runners on base, including multiple runners in the second, third, fifth and sixth innings. In fact, after scoring a run in the sixth inning, Sacramento State had the bases loaded and just one out but could not score again.
Sacramento State scored two runs in the first inning, and one in each of the third, sixth and seventh innings. However, Hornet starting pitcher Jennifer Hartman had a hard time with the shutdown innings, allowing Bryant to put runs on the board immediately after the Hornets had scored in the bottom of the first, third and sixth innings.
The Hornets got big days from a number of position players, including Sasha Margulies who went 4-for-4, including a double. Chattleton was 3-for-4, Zamari Hinton and Kortney Solis both went 2-for-3, and Paige Martin went 2-for-4. Four different Hornets had RBIs, including Hinton (2), Solis (1), Chattleton (1) and Paige Castro (1).
With the Hornet trailing, 6-4, in the top of the seventh inning, Margulies led off the inning with a single and Makenzie Wayadande came in to pinch run. Wayadande then advance to second on a wild pitch, and after a Hornet out, moved to third on a single from Nicole Clark, who advanced to second on the throw. After Martin lined out to second base for the second out, Hinton singled to left field scoring Wayadande, but Hinton was thrown trying to advance to second base for the third and final out.
Eight different Hornets had hits in the game, and the team had three doubles and three stolen bases, but the Hornets had trouble scoring more runs with constant traffic on the base paths.
Hartman (0-5) picked up the loss, lasting the first 5.1 innings of the game. Celina Matthias got the final two outs of the sixth inning in relief. Elle Madsen (3-3) picked the win for Bryant, allowing one run and three hits in 1.2 innings of relief. Bryant starter Logan Paul was tagged for four runs and 13 hits in 5.1 innings pitched.
In the 1-0 loss to Cal Poly, Mustang starter Sierra Hyland (8-8) was dominant, allowing just two hits and a walk while striking out four over eight innings. Hyland threw just 95 pitches, faced three batters over the minimum and retired the side in order in the first, third, fourth, fifth and seventh innings. She also worked her way out of trouble on a pair of occasions as the Hornets had a runner at third base with one out in the sixth inning, and had runners at first and third with no outs in the eighth inning.
Hornet starter Matthias (3-5) was very good as well, picking up a tough-luck loss despite allowing just five hits and one unearned run in 7.2 innings.
With the game still scoreless after seven innings, the tiebreaker rule went into effect to start the eighth where each team got to place a runner at second base to begin the inning. In the top of the eighth, after Castro was placed on second, she advanced to third base on a Chattleton infield single. Hyland then retired Margulies, Clark and Marissa Maligad to end the threat.
In the bottom of the eighth, the Mustangs loaded the bases with one out, but Matthias was able to get a force out at the plate after a ground ball to third base by Betsy Colburn. Matthias then got Chelsea Convissar to hit a ground ball to third base for what looked like the third out, but the ball was thrown poorly to first base, allowing Hyland to score the game-winning run.
The Hornets have now been involved in five extra-inning games this year, and are 1-4 record in those outcomes.
No one in the game had more than one hit as both pitchers were impressive all day. Chattleton and Clark both went 1-for-3 and were the only Sacramento State players to pick up a knock.
Sacramento State returns to action for the four-day Capital Classic on March 12-15. The Hornets will play four times, including once each day. For complete tournament information, including schedule and ticket information, CLICK HERE to see the tournament home page.
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