LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Cal State Fullerton (35-23) upset No. 3 seed UCLA (51-5) with a nine-inning walk-off to clinch their spot in the Los Angeles Regional tomorrow afternoon.
Trish Parks once again got the start for the Titans and once again was outstanding. The right-hander threw all nine innings holding the powerful Bruin offense to just two runs on nine hits. Parks struck out two and walked five in the contest as well.
Two Titans came through with multi-hit performances as Brooke Clemetson went 2-5 with a run, RBI, and stolen base and Bryanna Ybarra went 2-4. Shianne Brannan had a nice day going 1-3 with a double and two runs scored. Sammie Vandiver went 1-4 at the plate driving in the winning run. Julia Valenzuela and Sam Kennedy each logged 1-3 performances to round out the Fullerton offense.
It was a quiet first two innings for both ball clubs as each team only picked up a couple hits without doing any damage. That scoreless tie would end in the third inning though as Fullerton plated a run thanks to a ground ball off the bat of Clemetson and a great slide from Brannan at home.
UCLA would respond with a run in the top of the fourth after an errant throw from the outfield allowed a run to come in to score.
Fullerton would get shutdown in the home half of the fourth, but reclaim the lead in the fifth. After reaching on a fielder's choice, Clemetson swiped second for her 35th steal of the season and move up to third since the throw skipped into center field. With Clemetson sixty feet away, Vandiver lined a single into left field to bring in the Titans' second run of the ballgame.
Once again, the Bruins would respond in the next half inning with a bases loaded two-out walk that tied the game back up. Parks battled though and struck out the next Bruin to get out of the jam and limit the jam.
The game would stay tied as Easton Stadium got some free softball with the game reaching extra innings…until the ninth inning. After Brannan reached on a fielder's choice, Kennedy walked, and Clemetson came up with an infield single to load the bases. Step in the hero, Sammie Vandiver. Down to her final strike, she hit a hard ground ball right at the shortstop, but Perez couldn't handle it and everyone was safe. It marks the eleventh walk-off victory of the season for the Titans.
For Fullerton, it snaps a nine-game losing streak against UCLA with the last win coming back in 2013. It's also the first time the Titans have beat the Bruins in an NCAA Regional since 2005.
Cal State Fullerton will play in the Los Angeles Regional final tomorrow at 4:00 p.m. at Easton Stadium. Their opponent is to be determined.
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