Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
WHITTIER, Calif. – The Whittier College softball team ended their 0-6 SCIAC slump with a twin bill sweep of the Regals of Cal Lutheran University Saturday afternoon earning 18-3 and 5-4 victories at Palmer Field.
The Poets improve to 4-6, 2-6 SCIAC, while Cal Lutheran drops to 3-13, 1-7 SCIAC.
Game 1 (W, 18-3)
It took the Poets only 5.0 innings to push past the Regals in game one as they erupted for 18 runs on 16 hits behind a 12 run third inning that put the game way out of reach. This also marks the first time in Head Coach Shelley Whitakers tenure here at Whittier that any of her teams have scored this many runs in an inning.
Cal Lutheran opened up the game with a two spot in the first but the Poets answered with three of their own in their half of the inning after back to back singles from Courtney Grana and Nikki Mendoza and a three run shot from Denisse Martinez that put the Poets up 3-2.
After a scoreless second, Whittier's Courtney DeLano shut down the Regals in the top half of the third before the onslaught occurred. The Purple & Gold jumped all over starting pitcher Downing after she gave up eight runs on 11 hits. Whittier used a combined eight singles including back to back to back singles from Janae Townsend, Mickala Gonzales, and Delano to move the lead to 6-2 until freshman catcher Samantha Mellano and sophomore Gonzales hit three run homers to put the game out of reach.
Even with this 12 spot put up the Poets weren't done as they added three more in the 4th after Martinez drove in Emi Shimamoto and Mendoza to push the score to 18-2.
Delano pitched 4.0 innings giving up two runs on five hits to go with two strikeouts picking up her third win on the season moving her record to 3-3.
Game 2 (W, 5-4)
After an onslaught of hits and runs in game one the Poets were held to three hits over six innings and trailed 4-2 going into the 7th. The future of the game looked bleak after the Poets were sat down in the sixth in order by Regal pitcher Attalah. Then in the 7th, Whittier erupted for six straight hits and three runs to come from behind to win 5-4.
Jessica Rosnack pitched a complete game and gave up two earned runs on nine hits to go with seven strikeouts achieving her first win on the season.
After the Regals took an early lead 1-0 in the second, Whittier tacked on two the next inning to take the lead 2-1 behind a wild pitch and an error by the first baseman. This lead the Poets would hold onto until the 5th when Lichtsinn homered to left center with two outs to help the Regals tie the game up at 2-2. The following inning Cal Lutheran added two more runs to extend their lead to 4-2, but the Poets never went away.
To start off the 7th, Whittier's Gonzales singled down the right field line, followed by back to back singles from DeLano and Mellano that loaded the bases. Alexandra Flores then stepped up and hit a single up the middle that drove in one and the next batter Mendoza hit a flare into right that drove in the tying run. But with no outs Whittier continued to hit as Shimamoto singled to left to drive in the winning run posting her first game winning hit in her collegiate career.
Whittier looks to continue swinging hot bats as they take on Staten Island and Concordia on Tuesday, March 6 with games slated to start at 2pm and 4pm at La Bonita Park.