UCLA Takes Two Against Iowa State and Texas Tech
CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. – The No. 6 UCLA softball team opened day one of the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic with two victories over Iowa State, 3-0, and Texas Tech, 2-1, at the Big League Dreams Sports Park on Friday evening.
UCLA (9-3) was led by a pair of standout starting pitching performances by graduate Lauren Shaw, who made her first career start as a Bruin against the Cyclones, and redshirt junior Megan Faraimo, who went the distance for the complete-game victory over the Red Raiders.
Shaw tossed five scoreless innings of one-hit softball before redshirt senior Holly Azevedo assumed pitching duties in the sixth inning.
The Bruins didn't have a runner reach scoring position in game one until the bottom of sixth inning when Thessa Malau'ulu beat out an infield single and was advanced by a Kelli Godin sacrifice bunt. Cyclone pitcher Carli Spelhaug proceeded to walk the next two batters to load the bases, forcing head coach Jamie Pinkerton's hand to the bullpen.
In relief, Saya Swain walked the first two Bruin batters she faced to bring the game's first runs across the plate. Redshirt junior Anna Vines then hit a tapper that skimmed off the Cyclone pitcher's mitt which allowed Briana Perez to score from third before Lauren Hatch was gunned out at home plate.
Azevedo then tossed a three-up, three-down top of the seventh to secure the UCLA win.
In the night cap, Faraimo dazzled with her second double-digit strikeout outing of the season and 22nd of her career with 12 against Texas Tech.
Redshirt senior Delanie Wisz put the Bruins' first run up on the board with a home run to dead center in the second inning for her first longball of the season. The Red Raiders answered the next top half with a solo home run of their own.
The Bruins manufactured their next run with a bit of small ball in the bottom of the third. After Godin reached safely on a bunt hit that deadened just a foot in front of home plate, redshirt senior Briana Perez recorded a bunt double, catching the Texas Tech middle infielders sleeping. Freshman Savannah Pola laid down a sacrifice squeeze which scored Godin.
Faraimo racked up six more strikeouts, including three straight off rise balls in the sixth, en route to earning her fourth victory of the season.
Wisz made a charging play at third base and throw across her body to first for the game's final out.
UCLA will play another double-header versus No. 17/17 Tennessee and Baylor tomorrow afternoon at 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. PT, respectively. The games are available for streaming on FloSoftball.