April 22, 2011
DAVIS, CA - Offense carried the day on Friday afternoon at La Rue Field in Davis, CA as host UC Davis and Cal State Fullerton split a pair of slugfests in Northern California with the Aggies winning game one 9-1 in five innings before the Titans rallied for an 11-4 victory in game two, giving Head Coach Michelle Gromacki her 400th career coaching win.
The doubleheader split for Fullerton was the third in four Big West Conference series this season as the Titans moved to 19-18 overall and 8-3 in league play to retain a share of first place in the standings along with Long Beach State (which swept Cal Poly) and Pacific (which swept UC Riverside). UC Davis, which beat Fullerton for the first time on its own field with its win in the opener, moved to 19-20 overall, 4-7 in league play.
Saturday's rubber game of the series is scheduled for 12 p.m.
GAME 1: UC DAVIS 9, CAL STATE FULLERTON 1 (5 inn.)
The Aggies' sent nine batters to the plate in the opening inning, scoring five of them, and banged out 12 hits on the day while Alex Holmes allowed just five hits in the circle, helping UC Davis to the run-rule win in the opener, 9-1, in five innings.
Holmes (13-13) struck out six and stranded the bases loaded twice en route to the win, allowing just a single run in the third. Senior Ari Cervantes (12-11) suffered the loss for the Titans, allowing seven earned on 10 hits in the complete-game effort.
Perhaps trumping Holmes' effort in the circle was the Aggies' offense, which had eight batters record at least one hit and three with a pair of hits on the day. Five runs in the first was more than enough for UC Davis which got RBI hits from Kelly Schulze, Jessica Gonzalez, and Rachel Miller as well as a run-scoring fielder's choice and an error for five runs with only one out.
The Titans had only one hit until the third despite leaving the bases loaded in the second before back-to-back hits by Ashley Carter and Lauren Mario and an error set the table for senior Torrie Anderson, who singled through the left side with one out to put Fullerton on the board. Fullerton went quietly in the inning, however, leaving the bases loaded for a second time and coming no closer than 5-1.
UC Davis added three more in the fourth on a two-run single by pinch-hitter Bianca Castillo and a run-scoring single from Elizabeth Santana for an 8-1 lead and the Aggies ended the game early on an RBI hit by Kelly Harman in the fifth.
Carter finished 2-for-3 to help pace the Titans' offense and freshman Leesa Harris joined Mario and Anderson with hits.
GAME 2: CAL STATE FULLERTON 11, UC DAVIS 4
Carter, Latisha Dedeaux, and Adriana Martinez each finished with two hits on the day and the Titans scored multiple runs in three of the first four innings of the nightcap en route to the 11-4 victory.
Gromacki earned win No. 400 in her 12th season at the helm of the Fullerton program, improving to 400-265-1 (.601) and becoming only the fourth coach to reach the plateau, joining Long Beach State's Pete Manarino, Cal State Fullerton's Judi Garman, and Pacific's Brian Kolze.
Fullerton's 11-hit attack made a winner of sophomore Katey Laban (5-4), who remained unbeaten in Big West Conference play after holding the Aggies to just one run on three hits through the first four innings before UC Davis staved off the run-rule with a three-run fifth. Laban, who scattered only six hits, then allowed only one baserunner over the final two frames on an error to close out the contest.
Jessica Thweatt (6-6) suffered the loss, allowing five earned (eight overall) on seven hits while walking six in five total innings. She started and went only two innings before being replaced by Kasie Cochran to start the third, but Cochran lasted only two innings, allowing three runs on four hits before Thweatt reentered in the fifth to finish the game.
Dedeaux's two-run single in the first got sprinted the Titans out of the gate before the Titans scored five times in the second as an error, fielder's choice, wild pitch, and a pair of RBI groundouts extended their lead to 7-0.
A two-out home run by Santana got one of the runs back in the third for UC Davis, but back-to-back RBI doubles from Nicole Johnson and Torrie Anderson as well as a pinch-hit RBI single by Natalie DeLeese gave Fullerton a nine-run lead after four. A run-scoring groundout by Morgan LeMond in the fifth capped the scoring for the Titans, but the Aggies struck back to extend the game in their half on a two-run home run by Miller and an RBI ground ball from Gonzalez to make it 11-4.