Titans Rally for Split in Santa Barbara

April 2, 2011

Box Score - Game 1 | Box Score - Game 2

SANTA BARBARA, CA - The Cal State Fullerton softball team rallied for a split of their Big West Conference-opening doubleheader at UC Santa Barbara on Saturday afternoon as the Titans bounced back for a 5-4 win in the nightcap after a 2-1 loss in the opener at Campus Diamond.

Saturday's split moved the Titans to 12-16 overall and 1-1 in league play while the Gauchos moved to 13-17 overall and 1-1 in the Big West.

The two teams clash in the rubber game of the series on Sunday afternoon (April 3) at Campus Diamond. First pitch is scheduled for 12 p.m.

GAME 1: UC SANTA BARBARA 2, CAL STATE FULLERTON 1
Kathryn Pilpil's RBI double in the fifth inning drove home Kelly McDonald with the game-winning run as UCSB posted a come-from-behind 2-1 victory in the first game of the day.

Krista Cobb (5-8) allowed just one run on seven hits in the circle while striking out five for the Gauchos, stranding eight Titan baserunners on the day, including averting huge innings by Fullerton by leaving the bases loaded in the second and fourth innings en route to the win.

Senior Ari Cervantes (9-9) suffered the loss, allowing the two runs on six hits and striking out four in the complete-game effort.

A lead-off triple by freshman Lauren Mario and an RBI single by sophomore Ashley Carter in the first had the Titans sprinting out of the gate, but a double play and a strikeout limited the damage.

An error and a pair of singles loaded the bases in the second with two outs for Fullerton, but a pop-out ended that threat, while a walk and two singles in the fourth with two outs put the Titans in position for more, but the key hit eluded them once again as Cobb induced an inning-ending fly ball to keep it 1-0.

UCSB rallied for the tying run in its half of the fourth as Keilani Jennings slugged her second home run of the year to lead-off the frame and make it 1-1. The Gauchos then went ahead for good in the fifth as Lainey DePompa led-off with a single, was sacrificed to second, and scored when Pilpil laced a double down the left field line to score the pinch-running McDonald for the 2-1 advantage.

After going down in order in the sixth, the Titans tried to rally for the tying run in the seventh as junior Adriana Martinez reached on an infield hit with one out (her third hit of the game) and moved into scoring position when Carter walked with two outs. Cobb, however, shut the door with an inning-ending ground ball to first base to end the game.

Freshman Leesa Harris also finished with multiple hits, going 2-for-3 to help power the Fullerton offense. Lauren Boser finished 2-for-3 to lead the Gauchos.

GAME 2: CAL STATE FULLERTON 5, UC SANTA BARBARA 4
Senior Torrie Anderson's bases-loaded double drove home three runs as the big blow in a four-run sixth inning, erasing a two-run deficit and helping lift the Titans to the 5-4 win in the nightcap.

Two singles and a hit batter loaded the bases for Fullerton, which finally got the key hit that eluded it in the series opener. Anderson then laced her second hit of the game to deep centerfield for a double, clearing the bases for a 4-3 lead. After a wild pitch moved her to third, Leesa Harris lifted another fly ball to center, deep enough to plate Anderson with a much-needed insurance run and a 5-3 lead.

UC Santa Barbara got one of the runs back in its half of the inning on an error that plated Amanda Ziegler to make it 5-4, but the Titans escaped further damage as a runner was cut down at the plate on the same play and Cervantes, who entered in relief of starter Katey Laban (1-4), got an inning-ending ground ball to strand the tying run at third.

Cervantes then shut the door in the seventh for her fifth career save, getting a ground ball fielder's choice out after a hit by pitch, a fly ball, and a strikeout to end the game. Laban earned her first win of the season, allowing three earned on nine hits in 5 2/3 innings, working around three walks and striking out one.

Andriana Collins (8-9) suffered the loss, allowing four earned on five hits while striking out five in the complete-game effort.

Latisha Dedeaux's RBI single in the first got the Titans out quick once again, but Fullerton was held to just one hit over the next four innings as the Gauchos mounted their comeback to take the lead.

DePompa's first home run of the season to lead-off the third tied the game and Jessica Beristianos' two-run single in the fifth broke a 1-1 tie after a triple, hit batter, and a walk loaded the bases for UCSB.

K.C. Craddick and Nicole Johnson also finished with hits for Fullerton while four Gauchos finished with two hits on the day in the win.