Softball drops its third consecutive game this season


Senior Alexa Chattleton bats during a match against the University of Pacific on Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015. The Hornets dropped the match 8-6.

State Hornet Staff

Sacramento State softball dropped its third straight game Tuesday afternoon, as they were defeated 8-6 in a home match-up against University of the Pacific Tigers.

The loss drops the Hornets’ record to 3-8. The contest ends a brief three game home-stand, which leaves the Hornets without a win after coming off of a year in which they dominated at Shea Stadium.

It was a game that featured 12 hits by the Hornets, their second highest total of the season but left 10 runners on base. They out-hit Pacific, 12-8.

Hornets’ coach Lori Perez was pleased with the improvement of the offense.

“I was proud that we kept fighting throughout the game,” Perez said. “This was the first game that we continued to score throughout the game as opposed to putting up zeros for a few innings.”

Pacific started off the scoring in the first inning, with a two-run home run by Nicole Zapotoczny off of freshman Hornets’ pitcher Celina Matthias, who was making her second career start.

In the top of the second inning, miscues from the Hornets’ defense caused the Tigers to score three runs, extending their lead 4-0. Those included an error from Sasha Margulies and a couple of wild pitches from Matthias.

Alexa Chattleton extended her hitting streak to seven games in the bottom of the second inning, with a single to left field. Chattleton would then score from second after Nikki Gialketsis reached on base by fielder’s choice and a Marissa Maligad RBI single. It was the freshman’s first collegiate RBI.

In the bottom of the third, Chattleton hit another single up the middle, scoring Shelby Johnston along with a Kortney Solis RBI double to cut the Tigers lead to 5-3.

Pacific would go on to score in top of the fourth and fifth innings, improving their lead to 7-3. Sac State cut the lead to a 7-5 deficit in the bottom of the fifth inning, with a two run double by Gialketsis. It was her only hit in four at-bats.

After the Tigers scored one more run in top of the sixth, the Hornets had two on base with no outs when sophomore Johnston entered the plate. Johnston would knock in her only RBI of the game with a double to left center, scoring Paige Martin and advancing Hinton to second. Hinton didn’t score as the Hornets would hit three straight ground balls.

Johnston had the best offensive performance for the Hornets’ hitting 3-for-4, increasing her batting average to a team high of .391.

“I felt like I did my job as a hitter,” Johnston said. “I was doing my best to get on [base] and move runners.”

Chattleton also had a productive day for the Hornets, batting 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored. She is currently hitting .364 on the season, which is third best on the team. Even with the loss, she said the offense was productive overall.

“[We had] really good pitch selection, I feel like everyone is waiting for their pitch to hit, which is successful when we do that,” Chattleton said. “These [Pacific] pitchers were kind of throwing everything all around the plate, so it’s really important for us to pick our pitch and drive it through the hole.”

Matthias would pitch the entire game allowing seven earned runs on eight hits. When asked about why she didn’t make a pitching change, Perez said she saw Matthias making improvements throughout the game, pushing her to go the distance.

The Hornets will hit the road this weekend to play in a tournament hosted by Cal State Northridge and Loyola Marymount University.

The first day of play on Friday will include a doubleheader against Cal State Bakersfield at 9:30 a.m. and Cal State Northridge at noon. Play would continue until Sunday, March 1.

The Hornets won’t play at home until March. 12, when they host the Capital Classic Tournament.