Softball sweeps Davis in three-game series

Bri Chew/HIGHLANDER
Bri Chew/HIGHLANDER

April 25, 2015
Highlanders 1 — Aggies 0

A 13-inning, low-scoring affair on a warm, overcast day in Riverside ended with the Highlanders stealing a win against the UC Davis Aggies and snapping their three-game losing streak.

Saturday’s game played out as a battle on the mound, as both pitchers, Chelsea Ponce for the Highlanders and Leah Munden for the Aggies, kept the scoreboard knotted up at zero for what seemed to be an eternity.

In the bottom of the 13th inning, Highlander Haley Harris stepped up to the plate for the first at-bat of the half-inning, and was subsequently hit by a pitch, advancing her to first. Highlander Shylene Helms batted next, and reached first on a bunt. Harris also successfully advanced to second.

After the next two batters were retired, it appeared as though the game was headed for a fourteenth inning. With a runner on first and second, Natalie Sanchez’s single to right-center field allowed Harris to score, giving the Highlanders an uplifting walk-off victory at home.

April 26, 2015
Highlanders 5 — Aggies 2
Highlanders 5 — Aggies 3

Sunday’s action featured a doubleheader to close out the three-game series. The Highlanders emerged victorious in both games, improving their overall record to 36-15 and their conference record to an even 8-8.

In the first action of the day, the Highlanders upended the Aggies, 5-2, in a standout performance by Karina Romero, who tallied two hits and two RBIs in the game.

UC Davis jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first in the second game when an Amy Nunez single to right field allowed Brianna Warner to hitch a ride home from second base. Just a half-inning later, the Highlanders responded in kind plus more when relief pitcher Rebecca Faulkner blasted a home run to centerfield, scoring her plus two others.

Faulkner stole the show when she struck again with a double to left-center in the bottom of the third inning, scoring Madeline Richard to increase the UCR lead to 4-1.

In the top of the fifth, the Aggies scored again off another Amy Nunez hit that led to an Alexandra Sotomayor run, thinning the margin to 4-2. In the top of the sixth, the Highlanders had allowed Katie Robertson to reach first off a fielder’s choice in hopes of catching Kaila Olson before she could reach home. The Aggies prevailed, though, bringing them within one run of tying UCR.

Kris DeAnda added an insurance run for the Highlanders in the bottom of the sixth, but it ultimately ended up being unnecessary as UC Davis found themselves unable to score again for the rest of the match.

The Highlanders’ sweep of the UC Davis Aggies marks their first in-conference sweep of the season, with the team looking to continue riding the momentum as they prepare to the UCSB Gauchos on the road this upcoming weekend.

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