UCSB Splits First Day of Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic

Kristen Clark (Photo by Tony Mastres)
Kristen Clark (Photo by Tony Mastres)

CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. – UCSB (3-4) found itself on both the winning and losing ends of a shutout in the opening day of the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic. The Gauchos first blanked Binghamton 2-0 and were later shut out 7-0 to No. 11 Washington.

Kristen Clark had a strong day with five total hits, anchored by her 4-for-4 performance against the Bearcats.

BINGHAMTON

The UCSB softball team started their weekend at the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic off with a shutout win against Binghamton on Friday.

The pitching duo of Lena Mayer (2-0) and Ashley Ludlow blanked the Bearcats, combining for five strikeouts while allowing just four hits. Mayer was credited with the win after throwing the first six innings and allowed just one Binghamton runner to reach scoring position. Helping out on that last note, catcher Samantha Stark threw out Binghamton shortstop Jessica Rutherford in her attempt to steal second in the third inning.

Ludlow earned her first save of the season in shutting out the Bearcats in the seventh inning. The senior allowed just one hit and recorded a punch out.

Left fielder Kristen Clark led the Gauchos on offense going 4-for-4 with one RBI. Senior Arianna Palomares hit in the other RBI for UCSB, both scoring freshman Melanie MenorJacqueline Hinojosa was also an offensive presence going 2-for-3 on the day.

Small ball was the key in the third inning for the Gauchos. The scoring started in the third inning as Menor reached second off a bunt, and advanced to third after a bunt single by Clark, finally touching home after a single by Palomares.

The very next inning Menor scored again after a double by Stacy Cavazos and a single to left field by Clark.

No. 11 WASHINGTON

In facing the first of three ranked opponents they will play this weekend, the Gauchos fell 7-0 to No. 11 Washington.

The Gauchos mustered four hits in the game with Samantha Stark hitting the team's lone extra base hit with a seventh inning double.

Veronika Gulvin (1-4) started the game, but tossed just two-thirds of the first inning, allowing three earned runs, three walks, and a three RBI single. Ashley Ludlow came in and played the rest of the game and gave up three earned runs off seven hits, but struck out four batters.

To start the game, Kristen Clark reached on an infield error and later advanced to second and third after consecutive groundouts. But Washington pitcher Madi Schreyer kept her on third, as she popped up Sierra Altmeyer in her first at bat.

With their first take on offense, the Huskies loaded the bases after three walks. This set up the first scoring play of the game with a three-RBI single, which cued the pitching change for the Gauchos. Ludlow would walk her first batter, but later got out of the jam with a strike out.

UCSB held Washington scoreless through the following four innings and only allowed the Huskies to reach scoring position once. That sequence came in the bottom of the fourth when Morganne Flores doubled with one out. A groundout moved her to third, as she did in the first, Ludlow avoided a UW score with a strike out.

After the Huskies bolstered their lead with four more runs in the sixth, the Gauchos were down 7-0 heading into the seventh. The first two outs came in a ground out and a strike out, but Stark kept the inning going with a double. However, she would not advance farther, as Stacy Cavazos popped up to shortstop for the final out.