STOCKTON, Calif. - The Sacramento State softball team was held to a combined five hits in two games as 18th-ranked Pacific swept a Big West Conference doubleheader over the Hornets Saturday afternoon at Bill Simoni Field. The Tigers won game one, 1-0, before taking the nightcap, 5-0.
With the victories, Pacific improved to 42-9 overall and 11-3 in the Big West. Sacramento State, which has now dropped eight of its last 10 games, fell to 16-29 and 4-10 in the conference.
Pacific starters Cindy Ball and Jennifer Dacre each threw shutouts as Ball allowed four hits in her victory and Dacre allowed just one hit in her win.
In game one, Ball's two-out, RBI-single in the bottom of the seventh inning broke a scoreless tie and gave Pacific the win. Adrienne Ratajczak walked to lead off the inning and was sacrificed over to second base by Estee Okumura. Ratajczak then advanced to third after Boni Kading grounded out to second base. That set up Ball's dramatic walk-off single.
Ball allowed just one walk and struck out five in seven innings to improve her record on the season to 26-6. Sacramento State starter Jillian Bivert (6-10) got the loss despite allowing just one run and two hits in seven innings. Bivert, who hadn't allowed a run in 20-straight innings until Ball's single in the seventh, went the first 4.2 innings without allowing a hit. She set down the first 11 batters of the game in order until hitting Ratajczak with a pitch with two outs in the fourth.
In the second game, Dacre, who struck out five and walked two, thew a one-hit shutout to improve her record to 16-3. The Hornets' lone hit of the game came on a single by Roni Rodrigues in the second inning.
A Ratajczak solo home run got the Tigers on the board in the first inning. The team added four unearned runs in the bottom of the fourth to put the game away. An error by Hornet shortstop Andrea Becker aided the Tigers as a two-out, RBI-single by Angele Alves and a two-out, three-run double by Barbara Moody gave Pacific its four runs.
Sacramento State starter Nicole Deatherage (7-13) got the loss, allowing four hits and five runs (one earned) in six innings of work. The right-hander struck out two and walked none.
The teams play the final game of their three-game series tomorrow (Sunday, April 21) at noon.