March 11, 2012
DAVIS, Calif. - Justine Vela threw a complete game no-hitter en route to a 5-0 win over Idaho State before the UC Davis softball team fell to Sacramento State 6-4, wrapping up the Aggie Stampede II on Sunday at La Rue Field.
The Aggies (9-17) and Vela allowed just two batters to reach base for the Bengals (3-18) in game one after a walk and an error. Vela improved to 7-8 on the season after tallying seven strikeouts in the near-perfect game. There were two ties and three lead changes in game two against the Hornets (14-8) but Sacramento State ended on top after a two home runs on the game and a three late runs.
Kelly Schulze and Rachel Miller each had two-RBI doubles against Idaho State while Schulze added a RBI hit in game two. Amy Nunez finished with a combined three hits and three runs scored in the doubleheader and Kelly Harman sent out a two-run home run against the Hornets.
"I was very proud of Justine. She had great command of her pitches and the defense played well behind her," said head coach Karen Yoder. "The second game was a completely different story. Defensively, we had a let down and gave them some runs. Offensively, we kept the pressure on throughout the game but it wasn't enough."
In game one, the first 15 batters of the game were retired in order before a lead-off walk in the top of the sixth ended a perfect game opportunity.
UC Davis had an efficient five runs on six hits for the game, starting with a run in the second inning on one hit. Nunez reached base on a hit-by-pitch and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt and wild pitch. Kylie Fan brought home the first run with a RBI single up the middle.
The Aggies poured in two more runs in the both the third and fifth innings to take a healthy 5-0 advantage. A walk and a Nunez single put two on with two out before Schulze sent a two-RBI double to right center to make the score 3-0. Miller also had a two-RBI double in the fifth, sending a shot to right center after a JJ Wagoner lead-off single and walk.
Vela closed out the game from there, getting out of the sixth thanks to two strikeouts and a pop up after a lead-off walk. Idaho State also threatened in the top of the seventh with the first batter reaching on an error. No Bengal runners would advance into scoring position however, as UC Davis sealed the 5-0 win and no-hitter.
Kelsi Ott took the loss and dropped to 0-8 on the season after throwing 2.2 innings and allowing three hits and three runs.
Game One Box
In game two, UC Davis matched Sacramento State on two separate occasions but some late defensive miscues proved to be the difference.
The Aggies traded runs with the Hornets in second inning, with Sacramento State scoring the first run of the game on a solo home run from Marissa Navarro. UC Davis answered in the bottom of the frame thanks to another RBI double from Schulze, who evened the score at 1-1 after finding the right center gap.
The Hornets managed another home run in a the top of the fourth, this time using a two-run shot to go up 3-1. After Navarro drew a lead-off walk Alyssa Nakken immediately followed with her third home run of the season.
UC Davis found the answer again in the bottom of fifth, using two hits to score two runs. Wagoner had a lead-off single through the left side and advanced to second on a wild pitch before Harman sent a two-run blast to left field to make the score 3-3.
The back-and-forth game continued into the sixth where Sacramento State took its turn at the plate, scoring two runs on three hits and two errors. Riley Price was credited with a RBI single before the second run came around to score on a fielding error on the same play, bringing the score to 5-3. The Hornets added an insurance run in the top of the seventh, using a hit-by-pitch, a single and a double steal to take a 6-3 lead.
UC Davis attempted some late game heroics, scoring one run on a two-out rally in the bottom of the seventh after hits from Wagner and Harman. Despite bringing the winning run to the plate, the Aggies ended the game on a groundout to make the final score 6-4.
Melanie Russell took the loss for UC Davis and fell to 0-2 after throwing four innings of relief and allowing six hits and two earned runs. Jessica Thweatt started in the circle and lasted three innings, allowing three hits and three runs. Taylor Stroud earned the win and improved to 9-3 after tossing three innings of relief and allowing just three hits and one earned run.
Game Two Box
"We're not satisfied winning three out of five. I felt like we could have been 5-0 this weekend and that was the bar we set," continued Yoder. "Yesterday we couldn't get a crucial hit at the right time and today we were hitting but we didn't have the proper defense. We just need to get it all together and we need to learn to do that going into conference play."
UC Davis will be back at home for a midweek game on Tuesday, Mar. 13, playing Colorado State in a 1:30 p.m. contest.
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