BERKELEY, Calif. – A strong start and home runs from a pair of freshmen powered Stanford softball to a series finale victory over California, Saturday at Levine-Fricke Field. The Cardinal won 5-1 to avoid the sweep and move to 27-12 on the season and 6-6 in Pac-12 play.
Kylie Chung and Camryn Carmouche homered in the fifth and sixth innings for their first career home runs as Stanford ended the day with eight hits, going .385 (5-for-13) with runners on base.
The Cardinal came out of the gate with an aggressive approach at the plate to take a 2-0 lead in the first inning. Taylor Gindlesperger drew a walk, Emily Young laid down a bunt single, and Aly Kaneshiro also drew a walk to load the bases with only one out.
Emily Schultz hit into a fielder's choice, but the double play attempt failed and Gindlesperger crossed the plate safely for the opening run of the game. On the next batter, Ellee Eck singled to the pitcher to bat Young in for the 2-0 lead.
California (24-18, 6-9 Pac-12) closed the gap on a two-out, solo home run from Acacia Anders in the bottom of the first to make it 2-1.
In the bottom of the fourth, Stanford's defense rallied to maintain the 2-1 lead. A double down the right field line to put the tying run in scoring position with zero outs. Anders hit a line drive that looked like it was going to drop in the left side gap, but Young was there to make the grab on the line out and stepped on the bag to get the lead runner for the double play. Young's play proved to be the difference maker, as the Bears had back-to-back singles, which would have pushed the go-ahead run across the plate had Young not made the defensive play.
With two outs and a runner on first in the top of the fifth, Stanford extended its lead with a pinch-hit home run to right field from Chung to bat Aly Kaneshiro across the plate. Carmouche homered to left field in the sixth inning for the ultimate 5-1 lead.
Alana Vawter picked up the complete game victory to move to 17-7 on the season. Vawter limited the Bears to four hits and two walks in seven innings.
Stanford returns to action with a Tuesday doubleheader at Sacramento State, before hosting Arizona State – the last remaining unbeaten team in Pac-12 play – for a three-game series at Boyd & Jill Smith Family Stadium.