FULLERTON, Calif. – The Cal State Fullerton softball team received some offensive help from junior rightfielder Delynn Rippy who recorded a pair of triples and the eventual game-winning RBI as the Titans defeated UC Davis 6-1 on Friday night at Anderson Family Field.
Fullerton has now won seven straight games and has kicked off Big West Conference action with a 7-0 record to match the best conference start since 2007. The Titans are 32-10 on the year and have won 12 of their last 13 games.
UC Davis drops to 14-20 overall and 3-4 in league action.
"It was really important to get a win to start the series against UC Davis," Cal State Fullerton head coach Kelly Ford said. "They are a really scrappy team. They're out there competing every pitch, so to get a leg up in the series with a win tonight was great."
As they have in their last several games, the Titans scored first as they manufactured a run in the bottom of the first after Missy Taukeiaho reached on a fielder's choice, stole second and came in to score on an error by the Aggies. The Titans' lead would not last long, however, as the Aggies would even the score in the top of the second after a Titan error led to an unearned run.
Cal State Fullerton starter, Desiree Ybarra, lasted 2.0 innings and allowed one unearned run on three hits. She struck out two and walked two before being relieved by freshman right-hander Sydney Golden.
Golden took the circle with the score tied at 1-1 and pitched 5.0 solid innings of shutout softball en route to collecting her 13th win on the year. She scattered three hits, walked just one and fanned three as she lowered her season ERA to 1.84.
With Golden in the circle, the Titans regained the lead in the fourth thanks to Rippy's second triple of the game. The Oceanside, Calif., native came to the plate with a runner on second and two outs and drove a triple to the left-centerfield gap plating Courtney Rodriguez who beat out an infield single to lead off the inning.
The Titans held the one-run lead until the sixth inning when they exploded for four runs on as many hits. Sydney Colenzo got the offense going as she led off with a single back up the middle and advanced to second on a wild pitch. With two outs, Samantha Vandiver sent an RBI-single to right as Cal State Fullerton went up 3-1.
Taukeiaho drilled her 19th double of the season to straight away centerfield, scoring Vandiver and giving the Titans a three-run lead (4-1). Alexis Gonzalez stepped to the plate and belted her team-leading seventh home run of the year to leftfield as the Titans took a 6-1 advantage.
The Aggies' starter Andrea Reynolds (5-10) was tagged with the loss after pitching 4.0 innings of work and allowing two runs on six hits. She walked two and struck out one. Reliever Sara Cardona saw 1.2 innings of action and allowed four runs on as many hits with two strike outs, while Justine Vela finished off the game with just 0.1 innings pitched.
Rippy concluded the game batting 2-for-3 with two triples and an RBI, while Vandiver was 2-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI. With her base hit in the first, Vandiver extended her hitting streak to 14 games and her reached-base streak moved to 19.
Taukeiaho was 2-for-3 at the plate with a walk, two runs scored and a run batted in, while Gonzalez went 1-for-3 with a homer, a walk, a run scored and two RBIs.
Cal State Fullerton and UC Davis will return to action Saturday, April 16, for a doubleheader that begins at 12 noon. The game will be televised on ESPN3. Live stats and audio will also be available on FullertonTitans.com.