SOFTBALL SPLITS WITH CAL STATE BAKERSFIELD, REMAINS IN THIRD PLACE
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Junior Megan Schaefer threw 4.1 innings of strong relief and four different Hornets had RBIs as Sacramento State defeated Cal State Bakersfield, 4-3, in the first game of a Pacific Coast Softball Conference (PCSC) doubleheader Saturday afternoon at Shea Stadium.
In the second game, Cal State Bakersfield starter Katie Chavez allowed 10 Hornet hits, but just two Sacramento State runners crossed the plate as the Roadrunners claimed a 4-2 win.
With the split, Sacramento State (18-30, 8-6) remains in third place in the PCSC Coastal Division standings, two games behind first-place Saint Mary’s (9-3) and a game back of second-place Loyola Marymount (9-5). Only three games separate the top five teams in the conference, as Cal State Bakersfield (20-30, 7-7) and San Diego (6-6) are both tied for fourth place. Loyola Marymount was swept today at San Diego while Saint Mary’s swept Santa Clara.
With just six games remaining on the regular season schedule, the Hornets play their final two home games of the season tomorrow against Cal State Bakersfield, and wrap up the year next week in a four-game series at Loyola Marymount.
The Coastal Division champion will host the Mountain Division champion in a three-game series on May 14-15 with the winner receiving the conference’s automatic berth into the NCAA Regionals.
In today’s opener, Sacramento State scored twice in both the first and second innings to take a 4-0 lead. Behind the efforts of Schaefer, the Hornets were able to hang on for the 4-3 win. After starter Jacquelyn Serrano was pulled after 2.2 innings, Schaefer entered the game and limited the Roadrunners to just three hits and one unearned run the rest of the way. In fact, Schaefer retired nine of the final 10 batters she faced, including a six-pitch sixth inning.
Erin Jones and Marissa Navarro both had RBI-singles to get the Hornets on the board in the first inning. A Jenice Bartee RBI-double and a perfect sacrifice squeeze by Emily McCormick in the second pushed the Hornets’ lead to 4-0.
After retiring the first eight batters in succession, Serrano ran into trouble with two outs in the third inning. She allowed the next four batters to reach base safely, including a two-run double from Jill McClelland, before being pulled in favor of Schaefer.
Cal State Bakersfield tacked on another run (unearned) in the fourth after Heather Veitch drove home pinch runner Jamie Miller. On the play, Bartee threw out Veitch from right field after fielding a ball that had bounced through the infield for what appeared to be a single. The assist for Bartee was her program single-season best 11th of the season, and a ridiculous 10 of those assists have come on plays where she threw out batters at first base.
That was all the scoring there would be the rest of the way as Cal State Bakersfield starter Shawna Truan settled down and allowed just three hits over the final four innings. Truan (6-11), however, did get the loss, allowing six hits and four runs while walking three and striking out three over six innings.
Schaefer improved her record to 8-6, as she remains the lone Hornet pitcher with a record above .500. Bartee finished the game 2-for-2, and stole her 12th base of the season. She is now a perfect 12-for-12 on stolen base attempts and the 12 swipes are just three shy of the school single-season record of 15, set by Hilary Johnson in 2007.
In the second game of the doubleheader, it was the Roadrunners that got the early jump, scoring once in the first and twice more in the third inning to take a 3-0 lead. A McClelland home run to left in the first highlighted the team’s scoring.
Sacramento State, which was held hitless through the first two innings, recorded 10 hits over the final five innings but could push just two runs across the plate. In fact, the Hornets had at least two runners on base in the third, fourth, fifth and seventh innings.
Sacramento State had eight at-bats with runners in scoring position, but got just two hits in those situations. One of which was an RBI-double from Amber Roszkos in the fourth.
In the seventh, Jillian Canete doubled to open the inning and came around to score on a Cal State Bakersfield error. Later in the inning with two outs and the tying runners on base in the form of Bartee at second and Emily McCormick on first, Sacramento State’s top run producer Erin Jones stepped to the plate. Jones, who has entered the nightcap with eight RBIs in her last two games, flew out to right field on the first pitch she saw from Chavez to end the game.
Chavez (3-4) picked up her third win of the season, allowing 10 hits and two runs (one earned) while walking none and striking out three. Hornet starter Shelby Voelz (8-16) got the loss, giving up seven hits and four runs (two earned) over seven innings. Sacramento State's defense committed two more errors and continued to struggle during a Voelz start, as the right-hander has now allowed 18 unearned runs to score this season.
Roszkos (2-for-3 with a double and an RBI) and Canete (2-for-3 with a run and a double) both had multiple-hit games for the Hornets.
Prior to tomorrow’s doubleheader, Sacramento State seniors Katie Bossenmaier and Bartee will be honored for their contributions to the program.