VOELZ TOSSES THREE-HIT SHUTOUT, SOFTBALL SPLITS WITH LOYOLA MARYMOUNT
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Freshman shortstop Desiree Beltran combined for four hits and freshman right-hander Shelby Voelz threw a three-hit shutout in the second game to lead Sacramento State to a Pacific Coast Softball Conference doubleheader split with Loyola Marymount Saturday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The Lions were victorious in the first game, 2-1, before Sacramento State battled back to win the nightcap, 5-0.
With the split, Sacramento State improved to 21-23 overall and 7-6 in the PCSC, while Loyola Marymount is now 23-25 and 9-5 in the conference. Both teams will return to the field tomorrow for another doubleheader beginning at noon.
All three PCSC doubleheaders were split today, as the standings remain the same with six games to play (Saint Mary’s and Sacramento State have seven to play). Portland State, which split with Saint Mary’s, remains in first place with a 10-4 league mark, followed by Loyola Marymount (9-5), Sacramento State (7-6), Saint Mary’s (7-6), San Diego (7-7) and Santa Clara (1-13).
The winner of the regular season title receives the league’s automatic berth into the NCAA Regionals, something Sacramento State accomplished last season. In fact, members of that 2008 Hornet squad received their championship rings in a ceremony after today’s doubleheader.
In today’s second game, Voelz was impressive throughout, allowing just three singles while striking out six and walking none. Despite facing a potent Loyola Marymount offense that entered the doubleheader with a .287 team batting average and 49 home runs, Voelz faced just three batters over the minimum and did not allow a Lion past second base during the entire contest. In fact, Loyola Marymount did not get a runner past first until a one-out wild pitch in the seventh allowed a runner to advance from first to second base.
“Shelby did a terrific job stepping up for us today as a freshman,” Sacramento State head coach Kathy Strahan said. “Her changeup keeps getting better and she was really throwing it well today.”
Sacramento State scored three times in the fourth and twice in the fifth while banging out 13 hits. All but one Hornet starter had at least one hit, while Beltran, Rachel Miles, Izmena Cabrera, Sherry Clark and Whitney Loomis all had multiple-hit games.
In the fourth inning alone, the Hornets had three runs and five hits, including a perfect suicide squeeze bunt from power hitter Jamie Schloredt which scored Beltran from third. The Hornets then strung together four straight two-out hits, including an RBI-double from Alyssa Nakken and an RBI-single from Clark. RBI-singles from Beltran and Schloredt accounted for the Hornets’ two runs in the fifth.
Voelz improved her record to 6-8 while tossing the first shutout of her career. Corie Goodman (12-13) took the loss for the Lions, allowing five runs and 12 hits over 5.0 innings.
“I was happy to see some timely hitting from our offense in the second game,” Strahan said. “We received two gems from our pitchers and played well defensively, we just couldn’t break through in the first game.”
In that first game, Sacramento State’s Megan Schaefer and Loyola Marymount’s Melissa Dykema combined to allow just three runs and 12 hits. Unfortunately for the Hornets, the Lions scored two of those runs, erasing a 1-0 deficit as Sacramento State opened the scoring with a run in the second inning.
Sacramento State hit the ball hard all game long, but the ball kept finding Loyola Marymount gloves. That didn’t include a ball that Schloredt hit in the first inning that sailed just inches left of the left-field foul pole. Had that ball been fair, it would have given the Hornets to a 2-0 lead.
The Hornets scored their lone run in the second on an RBI-double from Schaefer which scored Cabrera, who had opened the inning with a double. However, Loyola Marymount scored single runs in the fifth (two-out, RBI-single from Amy Charpentier) and sixth (RBI-double from Chelsie Tysdal) innings.
That was enough run support for Dykema (11-11) who got the Hornets to hit into three double plays to get out of trouble. Sacramento State put at least one runner on base every inning, but could not break though against Dykema, who allowed six hits and one run while striking out none over seven innings. Schaefer (11-7) allowed six hits and two runs while walking one and striking out five over seven innings.