Womens Softball

Menlo splits GSAC DH with, Hope International

Date of competition: Friday, March 3, 2017

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By: Luke Halgerson

Friday marked the third and fourth conference games of the season for Menlo College softball with the Oaks going up against Golden State Athletic Conference opponent Hope International. Menlo is coming off a series in which they split a doubleheader against Embry-Riddle, winning the first game 12-7 and losing the second game 0-8. Coming into the series against Hope International, the Oaks have a 7-3 lifetime record against the Royals and Menlo is on a seven-game win streak against Hope International. The teams would split today's doubleheader as the Oaks won the first game in walk-off fashion 4-3 but would lose the second game by a final score of 5-7.

Game 1
It was a pitching duel for much of game one as it took some time for either team to get a run on the scoreboard. Menlo would score the first run of the game in the bottom of the third as Keeley Hernandez hit an RBI double to left-center field to knock in Kris McIntrye. Menlo would score another run in the bottom of the fourth thanks to Sarah Reyes hitting a solo home run to left field. The Oaks went into the top of the fifth leading 2-0.

Hope International would not just tap out and hand the victory to the Oaks. The Royals scored three runs in the top half of the fifth after a RBI single and a two-run home run. Hope International would lead after the fifth inning 3-2. Menlo would have to lock in if they had any chance of winning this one. The game would be decided in the bottom of the seventh, as the 2-3-4 hitters would come to the plate for the Oaks.

Cassie Grana got things started in the bottom of the seventh with a leadoff single to right field. Lauren Harrison would pinch run for Grana at first base. Keeley Hernandez would be the next batter for Menlo as she represented the winning run. With no outs and a runner on first, the count would run full against Hernandez. Keeley would give the next pitch a deep drive to left field and it would carry over the wall for a walk-off home run for the Oaks. Menlo would win by a final score of 4-3.

Keeley Hernandez had an excellent game at the plate in game one going 2-4 with one run and three RBI's. Cassie Grana went a perfect 2-2 at the plate in the game with hitting two singles. Kris McIntrye went 1-3 at the plate and scored a run in the process. Sarah Reyes got the start in game one as she pitched five innings, allowed three runs (all earned), off nine hits, walked one, and struck out one. Jordan Kennedy came in for relief and she picked up the win for Menlo as she pitched two innings allowing no hits and no runs in the process.

Game 2
The second game of this doubleheader had a lot more offensive firepower compared to the first game with the teams combining for 12 runs in the contest. Menlo once again would get on the board first as they scored two runs in the bottom half of the inning number one. Keeley Hernandez hit an RBI double to bring in Cassie Grana for the first run of the game, followed by Sarah Reyes who hit and RBI single to bring in Hernandez on the play. Hope International would pick up some steam in the top of the second as they scored three runs of their own thanks to a three-run home run down the left-field line. Going into the bottom of the second the Royals would lead 3-2.

Menlo would match Hope International as the Oaks scored three runs in the bottom of the third. Sarah Reyes hit an RBI double down the left field line to bring in Keeley Hernandez. Ariana Belarde would bring in the other two runs thanks to her two-RBI double to right field to score Sarah Reyes and Bryce Etzler on the play. Going into the top of the fourth, Menlo would hold the lead at 5-3.

Hope International would get a few more chances to take the lead and try to secure their first conference win of the season. The Royals would score four runs in the top of the fifth as they scored on a bases-loaded walk, a sac flies to center field, and an error by Cassie Grana to score two more runs. With four and a half innings played Hope International would lead 7-5. Menlo could not overcome the late-game deficit and would lose by a final score of 7-5.

The Oaks used two pitchers in game one as Victoria Cervantes would get the start for Menlo and Jordan Kennedy came in for relief. Cervantes pitched two innings allowing three runs (all earned), off three hits, and walked one. Kennedy would pick up the loss in the game for the Oaks as she pitched five innings allowing four runs (two earned), off six hits, walked four, and struck out five. Sarah Reyes had a nice game two stat line, going 2-3 at the dish with one run and two RBI's. Keeley Hernandez had another productive day at the plate, going 1-3 with two runs and one RBI. Ariana Belarde had two RBI's as well, going 1-3 with a double.

With the split series against Hope International, the Oaks move to 14-8 on the season and 2-2 in GSAC play. The Royals move to 7-5 overall and got their first conferences win of the season. Menlo will continue this six-game home stand tomorrow as the Oaks have a doubleheader against the 25th ranked team in the nation in San Diego Christian, Coming into the game, Menlo has a 2-2 lifetime record against San Diego Christian. First pitch is scheduled for 11:00 a.m. at Wunderlich Field.

-- Menlo Athletics

posted by Rick on Mar 4, 2017 at 1:55 am

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