March 26, 2008

Gauchos Sweep Doubleheader with Cal State Bakersfield

March 26, 2008

Box Score

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The UC Santa Barbara softball team posted two wins over visiting Cal State Bakersfield on Wednesday afternoon at Campus Diamond. The Gauchos shutout the Roadrunners 7-0 before posting a 4-1 run in the second game of the twin bill. With the pair of wins, the Gaucho record improves to 17-14 while Bakersfield falls to 12-16 on the season.

After taking down the first three Roadrunner batters in order at the top of the first in the opening game of the doubleheader, UCSB got on the board at the bottom of the inning when junior Tiffany Wright hit a solo home run with two outs.

The Gauchos left a total of three runners stranded in the next two innings before a pair of solo homers from freshman Jessica Beristianos and Ericka Hansen stretched their lead to 3-0.

In the bottom of the fifth, sophomore Jessica Ziegler led off with a single to left field and then advanced to second on a passed ball. Wright followed with a single, her third hit of the game, before senior Tisha Duran singled to right field bringing Ziegler home. With no outs and two runners on-base, Beristianos hit a fly ball out to right field bringing Wright home for her second run of the day.

With the 5-0 advantage, freshman Katie McWhirter walked before a passed ball let the two runners advance. A single to left field off the bat of pinch hitter Adrienne Anderson sent Duran home. A fielding error by the center fielder during the same play gave McWhirter ample time to score, pushing the Gaucho lead to 7-0.

The Roadrunners got out of the inning but were unable to convert two walks or a Gaucho error into runs in the final two innings, falling to UCSB, 7-0.

Wright was impressive in the win, going 3-for-4 at the plate with two runs, an RBI, a double, and a homer. Sophomore Christine Ramos, Beristianos, and senior Nicole Churnock each had two hits in the win.

Sophomore Lindsey Correa posted the complete game shutout, her third of the season, allowing just five hits and three walks, while fanning five batters. Brittany Johnson took the loss for the Roadrunners after pitching the first four innings and allowing three runs on eight hits.

In the second match-up of the day, Bakersfield's Bethany Snow opened the first inning with a lead-off double to left field. A sacrifice bunt from Stefanie Frei pushed the runner to second before Cara Klein singled to left field driving home the run and putting the Roadrunners on the board for the first time all day at 1-0.

The Gauchos got five runners on-base over the next four innings, but were unable to bring any home. Still trailing 1-0 at the bottom of the fifth inning, Hansen led-off with a solo home run, her second of the day, over the right center field fence to tie the game at 1-1.

Likely feeling inspired by their teammate, Churnock followed with a double to left center field and Ramos singled to right field. Ramos stole second base before Ziegler walked, loading the bases with no outs. A fielder's choice off of Wright's bat earned the first out for the Roadrunners, but kept the bases loaded for the Gauchos.

On the next play, Duran flied out to right field, but Ramos was able to score, putting the Gauchos ahead, 2-1. A double off of the bat of Beristianos during the next at-bat sent both Ziegler and Ramos home, stretching the UCSB lead to 4-1. UCSB held-on for the next 1.5 innings to take the second win of the day over Bakersfield, 4-1.

In Wednesday's second contest, Ramos led the team at the plate, going 4-for-4 with a run and two stolen bases. Beristianos and Churnock also both turned in double-hit performances for the second time during the day. Each had a double and Beristianos ended the day with a team-high four RBI, two in each game. Kelli Bailey led the Roadrunners, going 2-for-3 at the plate.

In the circle, Tami Weston earned the win after pitching a complete game, allowing just one run on seven hits. She also finished the game with no walks to her name. Kristen Schlegel took the loss for the Roadrunners after allowing all four Gaucho runs on nine hits with one walk and two strikeouts.

UCSB will continue its busy spring break week on Saturday when they open Big West Conference action at UC Riverside. The Gauchos and Highlanders will face-off in a noon doubleheader on Saturday and complete the three-game series on Sunday at noon.