Quality pitching, timely hitting, and multiple impressive defensive plays propelled the Stanford softball team to a 6-3 nonconference victory at UC Davis on Wednesday.
The Cardinal (5-2) took an early lead but needed a late comeback to defeat the Aggies (2-1). After taking an early 2-0 lead, Stanford faced a 3-2 deficit after four innings. The Cardinal rallied for four runs in the top of the sixth inning, its second win when trailing after five innings.
Kylie Sorenson (2-for-4) and Kristina Inouye (1-for-3) also had quality days offensively. Inouye recorded her first career double and earned an RBI on the play.
Carolyn Lee (3-1) earned the victory, entering the game in the sixth inning as relief. She held UC Davis to no runs on three hits and two walks in two innings.
Nikki Bauer did not get the decision but pitched well in her fourth career start. She limited the Aggies to three runs – one earned – on five hits and two walks with three strikeouts in 5.0 innings.
Montana Dixon was excellent behind the plate, throwing out runners attempting to steal in the first and second innings. Lauren Bertoy went 2-for-3 with a home run, two RBI and two runs.
Stanford ran into a bit of trouble in the bottom of the first inning when UC Davis loaded the bases with one out. Bauer got out of the inning unscathed, striking out the next two batters to end the inning.
Stanford looks to continue its momentum this weekend when it plays host to Omaha, UC Santa Barbara and Pacific as part of the Nike Invitational.
A shift in the singles lineup didn't deter the 20th-ranked Cardinal from topping visiting USF, 6-1, Wednesday afternoon at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium in a nonconference match.
The Cardinal (6-1) started doubles strong with Michael Genender and Sameer Kumar ripping past Christian Brockstedt and Oliver Poysti in the No. 2 spot, 6-1.
The Dons (2-4) rallied at the No. 1 and 3 spots as they pushed the Cardinal to a tiebreak in both. David Wilczynski and Brandon Sutter came through in the end with a 7-6 (1) win to help Stanford out to a 1-0 lead.
With Tom Fawcett pulled from the original singles lineup, the Cardinal remained composed with David Wilczynski defeating USF's Ryan Marker in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2, at the No. 3 spot.
Fawcett played in doubles competition but was pulled to give him a rest.
Michael Genender pulled Stanford within a point of clinching after dispatching Mert Zincirli 6-4, 6-4 in the No. 2 position.
Brandon Sutter played the clincher again for the second time in five days after jumping out to a 6-3 win in the first set, only to have USF's Oliver Poysti answer with his own 6-3 win. Sutter rallied back to add another 6-3 set to clinch the match for the Cardinal.
Stanford returns to action next weekend as it travels to Los Angeles to take on USC and UCLA on Feb. 24 and 25.