No. 2 Bruins Rally to Beat Fresno State
LOS ANGELES - Down to their last two outs, the second-ranked Bruins rallied with a run in the seventh and fourth in the eighth, holding on for a 5-4 victory over Fresno State on Saturday at Easton Stadium.
UCLA (43-4) advances to the Los Angeles Regional Championship on Sunday at 3 p.m., needing to win just one out of a potential two games. Fresno State falls to 37-11 and will play again on Saturday night.
Garcia (15-0) struck out 13 in her eight innings, one shy of tying a season high, allowing four runs, five hits and a walk. She fanned the side in the first and two each in the fourth, sixth, seventh and eighth, posting 1-2-3 innings in the third, fourth, sixth and seventh.
At the plate, the Bruins had 12 hits from eight different players, as juniors Aaliyah Jordan, Briana Perez and Kinsley Washington and sophomore Kelli Godin all recorded two-hit contests.
The Bulldogs, as the game's designated home team, scored a run in the bottom of the fifth, but the Bruins tied things up in the top of the seventh. Jordan led off with a single, and was pinch-run for by freshman Lauryn Carter, who moved to second on a Perez sacrifice and scored on a Garcia single to right.
The Bruins rallied with four two-out runs in the top of the eighth. Freshman Alyssa Garcia led off with a walk, moved to second on a sacrifice by freshman Thessa Malau'ulu and advanced to third on a double by Washington. One out later, Jordan singled to right to plate Garcia and Washington to put UCLA ahead. A Perez double scored Jordan to make it 4-1. Perez moved to third on a wild pitch, and after a walk to Rachel Garcia, Wisz singled up the middle to bring in Perez to increase the lead to 5-1.
It proved to be a big insurance run, as Fresno State scored three in the eighth, but Garcia got a strikeout to end the game.