March 10, 2012

Bronco Softball Edged by Gaels and Gauchos on Saturday

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Carissa Theis kept visiting St. Mary's off the scoreboard through five innings and the host Broncos brought the go-ahead run to the plate in sixth, but the Gaels held on to win Saturday's opening game of the SCU Bronco Softball Classic, 2-0.

Santa Clara (3-20) then lost a tight 3-1 contest to UC Santa Barbara (9-15) in the 1:30 p.m. game. St. Mary's (6-12) and UCSB will play Sunday morning at 10 a.m., followed by Santa Clara and UCSB matching up again at 12:15 p.m.

Fans can follow all the action live as tournament play continues at Spartan Softball Stadium in San Jose this weekend.

SCU BRONCO CLASSIC
Friday-Sunday, March 9-11 - Spartan Stadium (San Jose, Calif.)
Friday: SAN JOSE STATE 6, St. Mary's 5 - Box Score
Friday: SAN JOSE STATE 3, UC Santa Barbara 1 - Box Score
Saturday: St. Mary's 2, SANTA CLARA 0 - Box Score
Saturday: UC SANTA BARBARA 7, St. Mary's 1 - Box Score
Saturday: UC Santa Barbara 3, SANTA CLARA 1 - Box Score
Sunday, 10 a.m. - UC Santa Barbara vs. ST. MARY'S
Sunday, 12:15 p.m. – UC Santa Barbara vs. SANTA CLARA
Live Stats


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Helped by error-free defense in Game One and a pair of terrific catches in centerfielder Jamie Wallis, Theis (2-5) fanned seven in a complete-game six-hit effort for Santa Clara against SMC.

The Gaels gave true-freshman Sarah Lira (1-0) her first career start, and she responded with a gem – posting a five-hit shutout, walking just one. Michelle Mounts led off the Gaels' two-run sixth with one of her two hits and teammates Rebbeca Sabatini and Kayla Gonzales provided RBIs to put SMC up 2-0 heading into the late stages.

Jordan Newell continued her hot hitting by singling in her first at-bat for SCU. The heart of the Bronco order also came through with hits from Wallis, Kelly Scribner Breezy Bernard, as did leadoff hitter Alyssa Jepsen.

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In Santa Clara's second game, playing UCSB, freshman Jaymi Bautista-Geiger nearly homered in the second inning for the Broncos, driving a ball off the left-field wall. The opportunity was followed by another scoring chance in the third, when Jepsen doubled down the right-field line.

However, the Gaucho pitching combination of Andriana Collins and Shelby Wisdom (6-7) was able to work out of trouble and keep the game scoreless through four innings.

In turn, Bronco freshman lefty Briana Rios (1-5) responded by throwing strikes all afternoon, limiting UCSB to three hits before an infield single and Allison Taylor's two-out double produced the game's first run in the fifth.

Trailing 1-0 in the bottom of the sixth, Stephanie Fisher doubled off the wall in left-center to lead off the inning, putting SCU in position to rally. The go-ahead run reached first base moments later, then Briana Knight lined the second pitch she saw from Wisdom into the alley in left-center, scoring Fisher and tying the game at 1-1.

Rios threw 88 pitches (55 for strikes) in six-plus innings, leaving the game in the top of the seventh when Taylor hit her second RBI-double of the game to give UCSB back the lead 2-1. A sac fly later in the inning scored Taylor to extend the Gaucho advantage to 3-1.

Wisdom limited Santa Clara to one run despite Knight's one-out double in the sixth and would close the door by inducing a game-ending double-play grounder in the bottom of the seventh.