Softball splits doubleheader against CSU Bakersfield


State Hornet Staff

Sacramento State softball snapped a seven-game losing streak as it salvaged the second of a doubleheader against Cal State Bakersfield, Saturday afternoon at Shea Stadium. 

Sac State lost the first game 6-1 before beating CSU Bakersfield, 2-1.

The Hornets’ pitching in both games was a night and day difference. Senior pitcher Taylor Stroud struggled to find the strike zone as she gave up five runs on six hits and issued four walks. However, in the second game, sophomore pitcher Jennifer Hartman stymied the Roadrunners bats allowing only one run on three hits and four strikeouts.

Hartman said after the game that she was trying her best to get a win for her team.

“We needed to get a taste of being on the other side,” Hartman said. “Hopefully now we will work our butts off to get a win every time.”

In the first game Saturday, CSU Bakersfield scored three unanswered runs in the first two innings. During that stretch, Stroud amassed a total of 50 pitches while giving up five hits and three walks.

The Roadrunners struck first with a two-strike RBI single by designated player Jessica Castaneda, driving in left fielder Karissa Veiga. Castaneda would drive in her second RBI in the second inning, with a double to left-center scoring center fielder Sydney Raeber.

The Hornets would answer in the fourth by loading the bases after a double by sophomore catcher Kortney Solis, junior right fielder Paige Martin earning her second hit by pitch at-bat and a walk by sophomore first baseman Sasha Margulies.

Freshman designated player Alexis Martinez then walked scoring pinch runner Makenzie Wayadande, who ran for Solis. However, two batters later, Sac State would ground into an inning ending double play.

CSU Bakersfield scored two more runs in the sixth inning with an RBI double by Veiga and an error by Hornets freshman center fielder Shelby Johnston that scored Veiga one batter later.

Hornets head coach Lori Perez said it was not her team’s best effort in the first game.

The second game was a different story for Sac State. After giving up a leadoff single in the first inning, Hartman sent down 10 straight hitters.

The strong pitching from Hartman allowed the Hornets to get on the board first with an RBI bloop single to right field by senior second baseman Yesenia Alcala.

“The ability to use the timely hits to our advantage was the difference,” Perez said. “In the first game we were not making very good adjustments.”

The Hornets scored the eventual game winner in the sixth inning thanks to freshman catcher Nikki Gialketsis’ RBI single to left field.

Sac State and CSU Bakersfield will conclude its three-game series in the rubber match on Sunday at 11 a.m.

Clifton Jones can be reached on Twitter @SH_Sports