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Game 2 Box Score/Play-By-Play
Game 1 Box Score/Play-By-Play
SOFTBALL SUFFERS DOUBLEHEADER SWEEP AT NEVADA
RENO, Nev. -- Nevada’s Brittany Puzey combined for four hits, three runs and five RBIs over two games to lead the Wolf Pack to a non-conference softball doubleheader sweep of Sacramento State Tuesday afternoon at Hixson Park. Nevada won the first game in five innings, 10-2, before winning the nightcap, 4-1.
With the victories, Nevada, which was ranked as high as 17th in the nation before dropping out of the top 25 this week, improved to 9-7. The doubleheader served as the Wolf Pack’s home opener and the team has now won 14 straight at its home field (Hixson Park). That includes a 23-4 all-time mark at home since Hixson Park opened in the middle of the 2007 season.
Sacramento State (2-6) has now dropped six straight after an encouraging doubleheader sweep of Pacific to being the season. The defending Pacific Coast Softball Conference champions have yet to play at home this season and the team’s losing streak matches the longest drought in the last four years.
The Hornets were short-handed for today’s doubleheader as the team’s entire starting outfield (left fielder Izmena Cabrera, center fielder Alicia Noriega and right fielder Jenice Bartee) did not make the trip. All four players who appeared in the Hornets’ outfield today were making their first career collegiate starts at those particular positions. That includes senior Whitney Loomis in center field both games, sophomore Jacquelyn Serrano in right field both games, freshman Alyssa Nakken in left field in the first game, and freshman Marissa Navarro in left field in the second game. Loomis is usually the team’s starting second baseman, Serrano was a member of last year’s pitching staff and Nakken had played at first base or pitcher up to this point.
In the opener, Nevada pounded out 10 runs and 14 hits while also taking advantage of seven walks. All but one Wolf Pack starter finished the game with at least one hit as Puzey went 3-for-4 with two runs, a triple, home run and game-high five RBIs. In a game that was stopped after five innings because of the eight-run mercy rule, Nevada scored in every inning but the fourth.
The Hornets’ lone bright spot during the game came from Nakken, who had both of the team’s hits. She finished 2-for-2 with a run, a double, home run and two RBIs. Her home run in the top of the second gave the Hornets a brief 2-1 lead before the Wolf Pack came right back with four runs in the bottom of the inning.
Nevada’s Katie Holverson (5-4) got the win, allowing two hits and two runs over 5.0 innings. For Sacramento State, junior Brittani Clifford (1-3) took the loss, as she lasted the four-plus innings before being relieved by Shelby Voelz.
In the second game, seven different Wolf Pack players had one hit and the team scored twice in the first inning, once in the second and once more in the fourth. Sacramento State had five of its six hits during the first three innings, but could muster just one run while combining to leave six runners on base over those innings.
After Nevada took a 3-0 lead, Hornet freshman Desiree Beltran’s RBI-single drove in Megan Schaefer to cut the score to 3-1. However, that was the last run the Hornets would score as Nevada pitcher Tyler Schafer (4-3) allowed just one hit over the final four innings to pick up her fourth victory of the season.
Beltran had three of Sacramento State’s six hits as the shortstop finished 3-for-3 with an double and an RBI. Schaefer (1-2) picked up the loss for the Hornets, allowing four runs and seven hits over six innings.
Sacramento State returns to action for four games this weekend as part of a round-robin hosted by San Jose State. The Hornets will play both San Jose State (10 a.m.) and Boston (2 p.m.) on Saturday, before playing two more games against Boston on Sunday.
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