No. 16 Tritons Topple No. 4 Chico State, Take Over First Place With Pair of Victories
CHICO, Calif. – The No. 16 University of California San Diego softball team captured a pair of victories against California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) rival No. 4 Chico State on Sunday afternoon. With the wins, the Tritons improve to 20-6 overall and 18-5 in CCAA play, while the Wildcats fall to 18-7 on the season and 16-6 in conference action. The outcome shakes up the CCAA standings, as the Tritons move up to claim the first place slot.
Game One: UC San Diego 4, Chico State 3 (9 innings)
The Tritons came away with a thrilling extra-inning win in game one. Starting pitcher Robyn Wampler brought her A-game, scattering four Wildcat hits across the first four innings without allowing a run. The sophomore was matched early on by her Chico State counterpart, but the Tritons broke the scoreless tie in the fifth. Leading off the inning, Sherriah Harrington drilled a solo homer to left field to give UC San Diego a 1-0 advantage.
Chico State tied things up in the bottom of the inning, but the Tritons aimed to capture the win in the seventh. After Clarissa Reynoso was hit by a pitch to start the inning, Alyssa Wing came in to pinch run. It was a double to left by Mikaila Reyes that would bring Wing home, and the Tritons regained the lead.
A Wildcat sacrifice fly in the bottom half of the seventh evened the score again, sending the teams into extras, and the Tritons were unable to score in the eighth. In the bottom of the inning, with a runner on first, Dominique Acosta entered the pitcher’s circle. Acosta did not allow a hit to the Wildcats during the eighth, getting out of the inning and giving the Tritons the chance to grab a ninth-inning lead.
It was a repeat of the seventh for Reynoso, as she was again hit by a pitch while leading off the inning. Later in the inning, Reyes came through with a critical hit, and her home run blast to left field to give the Tritons a 4-2 advantage. Reyes’ three hits and three RBIs were both game bests.
Acosta and Wampler teamed up in the ninth to hold off the Wildcats’ comeback attempt, sealing a 4-3 victory for UC San Diego. Acosta ultimately earned the win, her third of the year, while Wampler gained the save, also her third. Both pitchers were in control, as Wampler allowed only two earned runs over eight innings, and Acosta gave up just one earned run in one inning of relief.
Game Two: UC San Diego 3, Chico State 2
In game two, the Tritons got on the scoreboard early. Keila Bosinger led off the contest by reaching on a Wildcat error, and stole second to move into scoring position. Later in the inning, UC San Diego capitalized on the Chico State miscue when Harrington sent a single into left field, bringing Bosinger home.
With Alanna Phillips holding the Chico State bats quiet in the early innings, UC San Diego extended its lead in the fourth. Reynoso drove a single up the middle and Isabel Lavrov and Danielle Stedman each drew walks, setting up a bases loaded, two-out scenario for Bosinger. Bosinger’s clutch single brought home Reynoso, and a Wildcat error allowed Lavrov to cross home plate as well.
Three runs were all that the Tritons would need offensively, as Phillips and Wampler kept the Wildcats in check. Phillips surrendered just two earned runs over 4.1 innings of work, while Wampler did not allow a run over the final 2.2 innings.
UC San Diego’s defensive efforts proved crucial. The Tritons did not commit an error in either contest, while the Wildcats’ four errors in game two proved costly.
The Tritons’ performances in the pitcher’s circle and in the field were two of the things that stood out the most to Head Coach Patti Gerckens about the pair of wins.
“I thought as a pitching staff they did such an amazing job,” said Gerckens. “They were selfless they were focused, and they really trusted their defense. Their defense came through for them, and I have to say that’s what I was most proud of. We didn’t have any errors on the day and I think it made the pitchers pitch better. It was truly a team effort... I was especially happy with Clarissa. She’s doing a fabulous job behind the plate as a freshman, and she’s really stepped up.”
The Tritons and Wildcats are slated to continue their series tomorrow afternoon. First pitch of the doubleheader is scheduled for 11 a.m. With rain in the forecast, be advised that any changes to tomorrow’s schedule will be posted here.
About UC San Diego Athletics
With 30 national team championships, nearly 150 individual titles and the top student-athlete graduation rate among Division II institutions in the United States, the UC San Diego intercollegiate athletics program annually ranks as one of the most successful in the country. The Tritons sponsor 23 intercollegiate sport programs that compete on the NCAA Division I and II levels and, in summer 2020, will transition into full Division I status as a member of the Big West Conference. UC San Diego student-athletes exemplify the academic ideals of one of the world's preeminent institutions, graduating at an average rate of 91 percent. A total of 80 Tritons have earned Academic All-America honors, while 36 have earned prestigious NCAA Post Graduate Scholarships. In competition, more than 1,300 UC San Diego student-athletes have earned All-America honors.
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