Matador softball sweeps Cal State Bakersfield in double header
Matadors softball (20-14) continued its recent stretch of strong play, winning both games Tuesday against the Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunners (8-21) 7-3 and 4-1.
In the first game CSUN opened scoring in the top of the second inning with an RBI-single by freshman left fielder Sabrina Garcia, giving the team a 1-0 lead.
Cal State Bakersfield answered back with two runs in the bottom of the third, however, giving the Roadrunners a 2-1 lead.
With one out in the top of the fourth inning, freshman right fielder Mackenzie Babbitt worked a walk, forcing the Roadrunners’ pitcher to throw nine pitches. Babbitt then advanced to second base on an illegal pitch.
After Babbitt moved to third base on a fly out by redshirt sophomore shortstop/second baseman Tara Kliebenstein, Garcia struck for the second time in the game with another RBI-single, tying the game at two.
Garcia finished the game a perfect two-for-two at the plate, with one run and two RBIs.
The game remained tied at two until the top of the sixth inning, when the CSUN offense erupted. Senior first baseman Ariana Wassmer ledoff the inning hitting her fifth home run of the season, and the rest of the Matadors followed by her example. CSUN sent nine hitters to the plate in the inning, on its way to scoring five runs.
The Roadrunners scored one run in the bottom of the seventh inning, but it would not be enough as the Matadors took the opening game 7-3.
The second game saw another CSUN win, this time paced by a strong pitching performance en route to a 4-1 victory.
Junior outfielder Katie Hooper got the scoring started early for the Matadors, recording an RBI-double in the top of the first inning. Sophomore shortstop/second baseman Savannah Horvath scored the opening run, previously reaching base on a single through the left side.
CSUN then double its lead in the top of the fourth inning. Redshirt junior catcher Karlie Habitz led off the inning with a single to right field. Head coach Tairia Flowers substituted junior Taylor Glover to pinch run for Habitz, which proved to be a wise decision.
The next batter, Babbitt, laid down a sacrifice bunt advancing Glover to second.
Later in the inning Glover stole third causing a throwing error from the Roadrunner catcher. Glover scored and gave the Matadors a 2-0 lead.
The two runs would be enough for CSUN pitching, as four different pitchers would only allow one Cal State Bakersfield run to cross the plate, coming in the bottom of the fourth inning. Freshman Taylor Troost, junior Daphne Pofek, junior Rebecca Bell and junior Katie Chenault combined to allow five hits, one walk and struck out five while only allowing the one run.
Bell recorded the win and improved her record to 3-2 on the season. Chenault recorded her first save.
After sweeping the double-header on the road, CSUN softball has now won eight of their last 10 games overall. The Matadors return home for a double-header Saturday to begin Big West play, against their conference rival Long Beach State.