SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Beginning a season-ending six-game homestand, Santa Clara softball lost to Pacific 7-1 and 2-0 Saturday afternoon.
After four scoreless innings, things unraveled for Santa Clara (12-32, 4-6 WCC) in the fifth when Pacific (22-24, 5-5 WCC) put up a six-spot. After seven straight singles and a fielder's choice, Bronco starter Micaela Vierra was pulled for Ciara Gonzalez. Gonzalez walked the first batter she faced but finally escaped the mess.
Vierra (5-12) ended up with the loss in 4 1/3 innings. She allowed six runs on 11 hits with a strikeout.
Cassidy Gustafson picked-up a game-high three hits, including a double, and scored a run with an RBI. Four other Tigers had two hits each and Rachel Sellers had two RBIs.
The Broncos got on the board in the bottom of the sixth thanks to an error and the sun. Ellie Fisher singled on a bunt and an errant throw put her on second. With two down, Taylor Burns hit a popup but the first baseman lost it in the sun and Fisher used her speed to score.
Marissa Young (8-6) was brilliant for Pacific. She allowed just the sun-aided unearned run and four hits, two of which were of the infield variety by Fisher, while striking out six.
Pacific (23-24, 6-5 WCC) finally broke through with a pair of runs in the top of the seventh for the only offense of the game. Back-to-back singles followed by a double from Sellers made it 1-0. Gustafson followed with a sac fly for the second run of the inning.
Kimberly Goulart started the bottom of the seventh for Santa Clara (12-33, 4-7 WCC) with a triple to right-center. After an out, Kelsie Barnard singled to the catcher to put runners on the corners and brought up pinch-hitter Gianetta France as the winning run.
Tiger starter Hailey Reed came back with a strikeout but walked the next batter to load the bases for the top of the order and the Broncos leading hitter, Fisher. After the count ran full, Fisher grounded out end the game.
Reed (7-6) ended up with the complete game shutout. She allowed just three hits with four walks and four strikeouts.
Reed also led the Tiger offense with three hits, including a double, and a run scored. Samantha Owen added a pair of hits as well.
McCall James (1-5) was solid but got the loss in the complete game. She allowed two runs on 10 hits with a pair of walks.
The two teams conclude the series tomorrow at noon.
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