SOFTBALL SWEPT AT PORTLAND STATE, CABRERAâ€™S HITTING STREAK COMES TO AN END
PORTLAND, Ore. -- Portland State starting pitchers Nichole Latham (four hitter) and Tori Rogers (three hitter) each threw shutouts to lead the Vikings to a doubleheader sweep of Sacramento State in a Pacific Coast Softball Conference doubleheader Saturday afternoon at Erv Lind Stadium.
The Vikings combined to outscore the Hornets, 12-0, winning the first game, 2-0, before coming back in the nightcap to win, 10-0, in five innings. In addition, Sacramento State senior Izmena Cabrera failed to get a hit today, and her 21-game hitting streak came to a close. The 21-game streak was not only the longest active Div. I streak in the nation, but it also set a Sacramento State and PCSC record.
The losses dropped the Hornets to 19-21 overall and 5-4 in the PCSC. Sacramento State continues to struggle away from home as the team dropped to 7-17 when playing away from its friendly confines. Portland State overtook Loyola Marymount for first place in the six-team conference, improving to 22-19 and 8-2. Sacramento State is now 2.5 games back of Portland State and 1.5 games back of second-place Loyola Marymount (7-3) with 11 conference games remaining in the season.
The Hornets and Vikings return to action tomorrow when the two teams play another doubleheader beginning at noon. Sacramento State needs to at least split tomorrow’s doubleheader with Portland State to stay within striking distance of winning its second consecutive PCSC championship. The winner of the regular season title receives an automatic berth into the NCAA Regionals.
As a team today, Sacramento State hit just .167 (7-for-42) with two extra base hits and only nine total bases. In addition, the team was 2-for-13 (.154) with runners on base and .143 (1-for-7) with runners in scoring position. The Hornets had gone 18 straight games without getting shut out and had been blanked just three times all season heading into today’s doubleheader.
In the first game, Latham and Sacramento State starter Megan Schaefer were locked in a pitchers dual all afternoon. Schaefer’s only blemish came in the fourth when the right-hander issued a two-out walk to Jana Rae Slayton, and Brandi Scoggins followed with an RBI-double. Scoggins was able to score on the play with the help of a Hornet throwing error as only one of the two runs in the inning were earned.
Meanwhile, Latham was cruising along, as she allowed just one Hornet runner past second base the entire game. That came in the fourth when Sacramento State put runners at the corners with two outs, but Latham retired Schaefer on a fly ball to end the inning. Freshman Alicia Noriega had a one-out double in the third, but advanced no further. In fact, Latham retired nine Hornets in a row at one point spanning the last out of the fourth inning until there were two outs in the seventh.
Latham (13-9) allowed just four hits, one walk and four strikeouts to pick up her 13th victory of the season. Schaefer (10-5) was the hard-luck losing pitcher despite allowing just three hits and one earned run over 6.0 innings. Schaefer, who lost for the just the second time since the beginning of March, still leads the PCSC with a 2.08 ERA this season.
In the second game, it was all Portland State as the Vikings scored four times in the first and third innings off Hornet freshman Shelby Voelz. PSU then added two more in the fourth off reliever Brittani Clifford and had the necessary amount of runs to win via mercy rule after Sacramento State was retired in the fifth inning.
Eight different Vikings had at least one hit, including Kristin Wilson who finished 2-for-2 with four RBIs, and Jackie Heide who went 2-for-2 with a third-inning home run. Sacramento State had just three hits off Rogers, who allowed just one walk while striking out four over 5.0 innings. Desiree Beltran and Alyssa Nakken had each had singles, and Jenice Bartee had a double for the Hornets. Nakken was the only Sacramento State player to hit safely in both games.
Voelz (5-8) got the loss, allowing eight hits and eight runs (seven earned) over 2.1 innings, while Clifford pitched the final 1.2 innings. The Hornets’ only threat during the game came in the third inning when the team loaded the bases with two outs, but Rogers struck out Cabrera to end the inning.