Hornets split doubleheader with Montana


Second baseman Zamari Hinton bunts against Nevada at Shea Stadium, Friday, March 4. The Hornets split the double header with Nevada.

Connor Ashford

The Sacramento State softball team split a pair of games on Friday afternoon against Montana, edging out a close 7-5 win in the first game and losing 9-2 in the second game.

The double header featured two competitive games, with the Hornets (14-14) and Grizzlies (13-17) giving each other their first Big Sky Conference losses of the season.

The first game saw Sac State and Montana trade first inning runs. Hornet first baseman Jessica Ravetti got the scoring started with an RBI single before the Grizzlies countered with two runs of their own in the bottom half of the first.

Sac State didn’t have to wait long for an opportunity to get back. After going in order in the second, the Hornets would get the bases loaded in the third but wouldn’t capitalize. The top of the fourth, however, saw the Hornets tie the game off an RBI double by catcher Kortney Solis.

The next inning saw the Hornets take the lead and add some breathing room for themselves. Second baseman Zamari Hinton lead off the inning with a single and advanced to third on an error before scoring on an RBI single by designated player Sasha Margulies. Two batters later, third baseman Kailey Olcott would drive her in with a home run to center field, her first of the year.

Starting pitcher Celina Matthias got tagged for a couple runs in the first but clamped down the Grizzly offense after that point, even retiring 12 straight batters at one point. She would wind up pitching all seven innings, giving up five runs but putting Sac State in position for the win.

Montana inched closer with a run in the bottom of the sixth off an RBI single, but Sac State answered back with a leadoff home run by Ravetti followed by an RBI double by left fielder Kayla Papez to extend the lead to 7-3.

The Grizzlies wouldn’t go away, however, scoring two runs in the last frame and bringing the tying run to the plate before Matthias retired the last batter on a grounder to first base and giving the Hornets their 14th win of the year and fourth straight in the Big Sky Conference.

The second game saw a close match get blown open late by the Montana offense. Shortstop Sydney Rasmussen led off the game with a single before Margulies followed later in the first with a two-run shot to center field for the Hornets; the only two runs Sac State scored in the game.

Starting pitcher Taylor Tessier started off the game strong, getting the first two outs of the game before giving up a solo shot to cut the lead in half. The Grizzlies would get the first two batters of the bottom of the second on base and would score the tying run off an RBI single up the middle and finish the day for Tessier.

Right-hander Savanna Corr came on to start the top of the third but ran into trouble almost immediately by letting the first two hitters on base. The Grizzlies would take the lead, but Corr limited the damage and gave up just a single run in the frame. She pitched one more scoreless inning for the Hornets before finishing her day.

Pitcher Kaitlyn Yerby came on in the bottom of the fifth and held the Grizzly lead to one, but things would unravel from there. The bottom of the sixth saw Montana score six times to put the game out of reach. The Hornets would go quietly in the top of the seventh to finish the game and give Sac State their first conference loss of the season.

The Hornets finish their road trip Saturday, April 2 against Montana for an afternoon game before coming back home.