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Gilberto Manzano

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The Cal State Northridge softball team (27-17, 7-8) ended its final homestand of the season on a good note this past weekend as it swept the UC Riverside Highlanders in three-game series.

The Matador pitching staff had a great series. Freshmen Hannah Fraijo, who was named Big West Pitcher of the Week, pitched eleven innings and didn’t allow a single run. Fraijo improved her record to 7-2 with a 2.39 ERA. Junior Debbie Duran pitched a complete game as well and got her record up to 17-11 with an ERA of 2.40.

The Matador bats also had a solid series at Matador Diamond and got 17 hits in the three games. Senior Micah Putman had a solid series with four hits and two RBIs. The Highlanders also had 17 hits, but left 23 runners stranded.

With the three consecutive wins, the Matadors climbed to fourth place in the Big West Conference standings and still feel they can win the league title.

‘I don’t think any of our series are must-wins,’ Putman said. ‘We play each series wanting to win because we want to go to the postseason.’

Putman and senior Sarah Kahn-Shamout were honored Sunday afternoon on Senior Day.

Game 1

Despite having a horrible game at the plate, the Matadors managed to get a 1-0 victory over UC Riverside in game one of a Saturday doubleheader.’ The Matador bats only recorded two hits, but Fraijo picked up the slack by pitching a stellar game.

The game was a pitching duel between Fraijo and the Highlanders’ Stephanie Marshall. Fraijo almost pitched a complete game, but was pulled out in the middle of the seventh inning. Fraijo only allowed five hits and punched out three UCR batters. Marshall pitched all six innings for the Highlanders and had two strike outs.

The Matadors got their game-winning run in the bottom of the fourth inning when Tracy Allen hit into a groundout to bring home Jaclyn Rymer from third base.

The Highlanders threatened to tie the score in the top of the seventh inning as they had two runners on base. However, Amanda Pitzenberger came in for the Matadors and ended UCR’s rally by getting a strikeout, ending the game.

Game 2′ ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘

In game two of the Saturday doubleheader, the Matadors and the Highlanders went down to the wire, but CSUN prevailed and got the 2-1 victory. Duran, a pitcher, looked like her old self and pitched a complete game. She allowed four hits and recorded three strikeouts.

The Highlanders got on the scoreboard first when pitcher Marissa Alvidrez hit a homerun to center right field. The Matadors tied the score in the bottom of the fifth after Lauren Olivas got an RBI single.

In the bottom of the seventh inning, Krystal Raphael started the inning with an up-the-middle single. She was then replaced by Kahn-Shamout. Later in the inning, Alexandria Alvarado had the game-winning RBI after she singled to left field.

Game 3

The Matadors had to dig deep in the final game of the season at Matador Diamond on Sunday and ultimately won 5-3. On Senior Day, Putman hit a two-run homerun in the bottom of the first inning and got a led-off single in the bottom of the sixth to start a three- run rally.

Duran had a short day on the mound for the Matadors. She was knocked out in the third inning after she allowed two UC Riverside homeruns that put the Highlanders ahead 3-2. Fraijo came in for relief work and didn’t allow the Highlanders to score another run.

In the bottom of the sixth, the Matadors finally managed their comeback as Allen hit a triple to bring two runners home. Later in the inning, Olivas hit a single to right field to bring home Allen.