TURLOCK, Calif. – The University of California San Diego softball opened the second day of the Tournament of Champions, presented by the City of Turlock and hosted by Stanislaus State, with a convincing 7-2 win over Northwest Nazarene. UC San Diego dropped its second game to Western Washington, 1-0.
UCSD moves to 17-17 on the season. NNU is 17-17 and WWU improves to 15-12.
"We played two great games today," said head coach Patti Gerckens. "We hit well in the first game but in the second game we couldn't get the clutch hit. Overall we did well".
Sophomore right-handed pitcher Lauren Brown (6-7) threw five innings and limited the Crusaders to a single hit while striking out six batters as the Tritons earned a 7-2 victory.
UCSD capitalized on a NNU error in the first inning to score its first run. Junior Kendall Baker made it across home plate on a throwing error by the Crusader right fielder.
The Tritons extended their lead in the second inning when sophomore Caitlyn Weisner stole home to give UCSD a two-run advantage.
Junior Ashley Chestnut got things started in the third inning with an RBI single that scored classmate Kelsi Maday. Junior Kendall Woken followed with a single through the middle to bring Rachel Phillips home.
In the sixth inning, Maday singled before stealing second and advancing to third on the throw. She scored on a groundout by junior Lauren Sanders as UCSD took a 5-0 lead.
The Tritons added two more runs in the sixth inning to seal the victory. Sophomore Maddy Lewis hit a single up the middle to score freshman Danica Kazakoff followed by an RBI double from Maday that brought Baker across home plate.
The Crusaders’ Madison Strickler hit a two-run bomb over left center in the bottom of the seventh inning to give NNU its only runs of the game.
In the circle, Brown was credited with her sixth win of the season. Freshman righty Alanna Phillips came in relief of Brown and gave up two runs. Freshman Lizzy Beutter pitched the final inning and allowed one hit. The Crusaders’ Brooke Bonsen (8-9) earned the loss after giving up 12 hits and seven runs in 5.1 innings of play.
Maday went a perfect three-for-three at the plate with two runs and an RBI. Kazakoff, Weisner and Lewis each tallied two hits. As a team, UCSD stole four bases.
The Tritons could not get anything going offensively and were shutout, 1-0. WWU’s pitcher Shearyna Labasan (6-2) threw a complete game and limited UCSD to only three hits.
The game remained scoreless until the bottom of the fourth inning. The Vikings’ Kali Patterson hit a big double to left center that brought home Emily Benson and gave WWU a 1-0 lead.
Baker hit a single in the sixth inning and Weisner had a double to left field in the seventh frame but it wasn’t enough as UCSD suffered the loss.
Senior left-hander pitcher Milana Casillas (6-5) tossed 3.2 innings and earned the loss after giving up one run and three hits. She totaled three strikeouts. Beutter came in relief of Casillas and allowed one hit in 2.1 innings of work.
Baker, Lewis and Weisner tallied the Tritons’ only hits of the game while Lewis notched one stolen base.
UCSD concludes the Tournament of Champions on Sunday, April 2. The Tritons play Concordia (Ore.) at 9 a.m., followed by Simon Fraser at 11:30 a.m.