Feb. 10, 2013
FRESNO, Calif. - Another victory over Southern Miss, a pitcher's duel and a play at the plate against rival Sacramento State highlighted the Aggies' final day of action from Bulldog Diamond at the Fresno State Kick-Off in Fresno, Calif.
Game One - UC Davis vs. Southern Miss
A rematch of the inaugural game of the Fresno State Kick-Off, Sunday's game ended in a similar fashion to Friday's contest as the Aggies scored another five runs against the Golden Eagles to complete the weekend sweep with a 5-2 win.
The victory improved UC Davis' record to 3-1, Southern Miss left the Kick-Off with a 2-5 record. Of the losses suffered by the Golden Eagles throughout their time in Fresno, half were earned against the Aggies.
After a scoreless first frame, the Golden Eagles were the first to light up the scoreboard, pushing one across the plate in the top of the second.
Even with a shorter-than-planned respite after Saturday's late night action - day two at the Kick-Off closed with a UC Davis victory earned after midnight - the Aggies did not exhibit any ill effects from the previous evening and responded by scoring three in the bottom of the second to take a lead that would remain in their possession for the rest of the game.
Centerfielder Krista Bava was 2-for-3 at the plate against Southern Miss, earning her first hit in UC Davis' half of the second to start the Aggies' scoring run. Advancing to second on a sacrifice bunt by shortstop Christa Castello, Bava scored UC Davis' first run of the morning on catcher Kelly Schulze's single to left field.
Back-to-back singles from second baseman Chandler Wagner and left fielder Cassandra Ginnis kept the Aggies moving around the bases; a throwing error from Golden Eagles left fielder Danielle LaPointe allowed Wagner and Kaila Olson, who entered the game to pinch run for Schulze, to score.
Aggie starter Justine Vela did not allow a hit to Southern Miss in the third, her final inning of action, and ended the Aggies' first of back-to-back games having allowed only two hits throughout her time in the circle.
Throwing the last four innings for UC Davis was Jessica Thweatt; entering the game with a one-run lead, the senior right-hander fanned four and only gave up one hit en route to her first victory of the season.
Aiding Thweatt's cause, the Aggies plated another run in the fourth and fifth innings to extend their lead to the game's eventual outcome at 5-2.
Leading off the fourth with a single to center, Schulze picked up her second RBI of the morning on her double to centerfield, completing her 3-for-3 performance at the plate the following inning with another single.
The fifth inning also saw designated player Christina Guidry earn a trip to first the hard way after being struck by a pitch from Southern Miss starter Kimberly Wagner. But it was the Golden Eagles that eventually felt the sting of that play as the Aggies all but officially recorded the victory when Guidry touched home on a double from Bava to increase the Aggies' lead to three runs.
Game Two - UC Davis vs. Sacramento State
Sunday's starters took center stage in a classic pitcher's duel between Causeway rivals that was ultimately decided by one Sacramento State swing, and a play at the plate.
Entering the seventh inning trailing 2-0 after giving up a run in the first on a sacrifice fly, and another in the third on a Hornet home run, the Aggies cut their deficit in half when a leadoff bunt by Guidry became the first Aggie run of the game on a double to left center by Bava.
It was then when the decisive moment of the game began to unfold once Janelle Gusiff stepped into the batter's box to face Sacramento State starter Caitlin Brooks.
The moment Gusiff ripped a single through the middle of the infield, Bava sprinted her way from second to third, and rounded the hot corner heading towards home.
Anything other than a perfect throw from centerfield to the plate would have allowed Bava to tie the game at two apiece and potentially force additional action. Unfortunately for UC Davis the play in the plate did not end in its favor as Bava was tagged for the first out of the frame.
A seven-inning game literally came down to one play and a matter of inches; unable to push that second run across the plate, UC Davis fell 2-1 in the first of three games scheduled this season against the Hornets.
The two will meet again in a non-conference doubleheader at Shea Stadium on Feb. 27.
Combined UC Davis starter Leah Munden and reliever Thweatt allowed only five hits, struckout five and walked only one batter.
UC Davis will return to action on Wednesday, Feb. 13, when Cal visits La Rue Field in the Aggies' 2 p.m. home opener.