CROSS HAS TWO DOUBLES AND A HOME RUN, BUT SOFTBALL DROPS A PAIR AT THE PACIFIC ROUND ROBIN
STOCKTON, Calif. -- Sacramento State’s offense produced just nine hits over 16 innings as the Hornets dropped a pair of games during the fist day of the Pacific Softball Round Robin Saturday afternoon at Bill Simoni Field. Sacramento State lost its first game, 4-1, to host Pacific in nine innings, before falling in the second game, 3-0, to UNLV.
With the losses, Sacramento State dropped to 7-20 overall. The Hornets will play both teams again tomorrow to complete tournament play. Pacific improved to 19-11, and UNLV improved to 24-14 with the victories.
The Hornets hit just .180 in both games, including a combined 1-for-22 (.045) with runners on base and 0-for-16 with runners in scoring position. Sacramento State’s starting pitchers Kayla Meeks (vs. Pacific) and Michele Bochenski (vs. UNLV) kept the Hornets in both games, but the team managed to push just one run across the plate during the entire day.
In the first game, Meeks and Pacific starter Alyce Jorgensen were locked in a pitchers dual until Jorgensen was pulled in the seventh inning in favor of Chelsea Engle. Sacramento State got its only run of the game in the third inning on junior Melissa Cross’ first home run in a Hornet uniform.
With the international tiebreaker rule in effect after the game was still tied, 1-1, after seven innings, Sacramento State mounted its best threat in the bottom of the eighth. The Hornets loaded the bases with two outs, but Engle got the Hornets’ top hitter (Jamie Schloredt) to fly out ending the inning.
In the top of the ninth, Pacific finally broke through against Meeks with an RBI-singe from Casey Goldsand and a two-run single from Lizzie Hagen to give the Tigers a 4-1 lead. Sacramento State was retired in order in the bottom of the ninth, and Engle (10-7) got the win, pitching 2.2 innings of hitless relief. Meeks (3-8) picked up the loss, allowing four runs (three earned) and eight hits over nine innings.
In the loss to UNLV, Rebel starter Stephanie Bregante pitched a five-hit shutout, striking out four while walking none. She faced just four batters over the minimum and improved her record to 7-5.
The Rebels picked up single runs in the third, fifth and sixth innings against Bochenski, and that proved to be plenty as Sacramento State left runners in scoring position three times in the first five innings. Cross again was the Hornets’ offensive catalyst, finishing 2-for-3 with two doubles. She finished the doubleheader 3-for-6 with two doubles, a home run and a 1.333 slugging percentage.
After getting a hit in the first game, Sacramento State junior Amy Jo McKenzie was 0-for-3 against UNLV, seeing her career-high nine-game hitting streak come to a close. Bochenski (2-5) got the loss against the Rebels, allowing three runs and 10 hits over six innings.
Jaci Hull paced UNLV with four hits, two runs and an RBI.
Both of Sacramento State’s games tomorrow against UNLV (10 a.m.) and Pacific (2 p.m.) can be heard live via www.hornetsports.com with Greg Young calling all the action. Log onto the live audio link, and scroll down to the softball schedule to access the games.