Bruins Sweep Eighth-Ranked Titans in Softball Doubleheader
March 25, 2003
FULLERTON, CA - Despite two weeks away from competition due to winter quarter final exams, the Bruin softball team returned to the diamond looking sharp on Tuesday night in Fullerton, dispatching the eighth-ranked Cal State Fullerton Titans by game scores of 11-2 and 8-2. The top-ranked Bruins improve to 28-2 with the wins, while Fullerton is now 19-12.
The Bruins scored early and often in the first game of the doubleheader, as a two-out rally in the top of the first inning opened the scoring for UCLA. Tairia Mims drew a walk and scored from first on a long double down the left field line hit by Claire Sua.
The bottom of the first inning saw two Titan hits, a lead-off single down the third base line by Jodie Cox and a one-out single through the right side by Jenny Topping. The Bruins were able to get out of the inning when Amanda Hockett grounded into a fielders choice that turned into an inning-ending double play, when Natasha Watley fielded the ball, flipped it to Monique Mejia for the out at second base, then threw home to get Cox out at the plate.
In the second, the Bruins used two home runs to post four runs, taking a 5-0 lead. All of the UCLA runs scored with two outs, as Andrea Duran started things off with a two-out single to left field. She came around to score on a long home run to right field by Natasha Watley, her fourth of the season. Caitlin Benyi kept the rally going with a single through the right side of the infield, and would score on a towering home run to right field by Tairia Mims, as the ball landed on the adjacent field.
Fullerton loaded the bases in the bottom of the third inning on a Bruin error, a walk, and a single by Gina Oaks that hit the fence in left center field, but failed to score a run because the lead runner was waiting to tag up. The single brought Jenny Topping to the plate, but Bruin pitcher Keira Goerl sat her down with Goerl's third strikeout of the game. With two outs, Hockett stepped to the plate and the Bruins were unable to get the out at first base due to an error that scored lead runner Kristy Halagarda who had reached on an error, and Jodie Cox, bringing the score to 7-2.
Another Mims home run, this time a shot to left that hit the scoreboard for her 10th of the season, gave UCLA an 8-2 lead, and the Bruins put it away in the top of the fifth with a three-run inning. The finishing rally started with a lead-off double by Andrea Duran, followed by a single to the right side of the infield by Watley, with Duran scoring on the play. Watley came around to score on a double to right by Benyi, and Benyi scored on a two-out single to left by Stephanie Ramos, bringing the score to 11-2.
Keira Goerl earned the win for UCLA, improving her season record to 19-2. She recorded six strikeouts during her five innings in the circle. Tuesday's first game marked the first time the Titans had lost via the run-rule since the Bruins visited the just-completed Titan Softball Complex on Feb. 7, 2001, winning the second game of the doubleheader by a score of 10-2 in five innings.
In game two, the Bruin offense kept right on rolling, with three runs scored in the first and four in the second inning.
Once again, a two-out rally sparked the Bruins in the first, as Mims drew a walk, Sua was hit by a pitch, Ramos reached on catchers interference. An RBI walk by Emily Zaplatosch scored Amanda Simpson, who was pinch-running for Mims. Sua and Ramos would come around to score on a Toria Auelua single, giving UCLA the 3-0 lead.
In the second inning, Duran led off with a walk, advanced to second on a single by Natasha Watley, and went to third on a fielders choice by Benyi, with Watley out on the play. A double to left field by Mims scored both runners. After Ramos reached on catchers interference for a second consecutive plate appearance, two more runs would score on a bases-clearing triple to right field by Emily Zaplatosch, giving UCLA the 7-0 lead after an inning and a half.
The Titans pushed one run across in the bottom of the second and a second on an RBI walk in the fifth, bringing the score to 7-2. UCLA manufactured an eighth and final run in the top of the seventh, as Claire Sua ripped a single through the left side and pinch-runner Alissa Eno stole second, advanced to third on a ground-out by Stephanie Ramos and scored on a passed ball for her third run scored of the season.