SACRAMENTO, Calif. – On the second day of the NorCal Kickoff, Santa Clara softball dropped a pair of games. The Broncos (0-4) fell to Nevada (1-0) 6-4 in the opener before losing 14-6 to Sacramento State in the second game.
Down two in the seventh, Santa Clara got the tying runs on base with one out via a walk to Sammy Needham and a hit-by-pitch for Alexandria Hale but a strikeout and fielder's choice ended the threat and the game.
After the Broncos had drawn even in the fifth, the Wolfpack came back with the winning runs in the next half inning. Sadaria McAlister knocked in the first run with a double to right center and two batters later Kwynn Warner singled her in.
McAlister was 2-for-3 on the day with two doubles, two runs scored, two RBIs, and a walk. Ashley Saalusa also added three RBIs while hitting a double.
Kendall Fritz lasted 4 1/3 innings in the start, surrendering four runs on six hits with a walk and seven strikeouts and getting a no-decision. Rachel Rodriguez (1-0) got the win in 2 scoreless innings of relief with Kali Sargent tossing the final 2/3 innings for her first save of the year.
Jordan Dawkins helped spark the game-tying rally in the bottom of the fifth with a single and two stolen bases before Eleni Spirakis cracked a two-run home run to left to make it 4-4.
Spirakis finished 2-for-2 with two runs scored and two RBIs out of the leadoff spot with Dawkins also adding two hits and a run scored. Kelsey Barnard had a solo home run in the fourth and Reagan Dias knocked an RBI double in the third for the Broncos' first run of the game.
Aubree Kim (0-2) started for the Broncos and allowed six runs, five earned, on five hits with seven walks and two strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings while taking the loss.
After the Broncos took their first lead of the game in the bottom of the sixth, a nine-run, three home run seventh for the Hornets made it 14-6. Mo Spieth put Sacramento State back up with a two-run shot and Sydney Rassmussen added a three-run shot with Krystal Aubert blasting a two-run homer.
Seven different Hornets drove in at least one run with three each from Alas and Rasmussen and two apiece from Aubert and Spieth. Alas and Katie Vretzos both picked up three hits and four others had two each.
Savanna Corr started and got a no-decision in 4 innings. Danielle Sperry (1-0) tossed 3 innings while allowing a run on two hits with two walks a two strikeouts to pick up the win.
The Broncos briefly took a lead in the bottom of the sixth behind the speed of Eleni Spirakis. After a one out single, Spirakis swiped second and moved up on an infield single before coming in on a wild pitch to make it 6-5.
Sammy Needham paced the offense with three hits, including a double, two RBI's and a run scored. Spirakis had a double among her two hits and scored two runs.
Lauren Anderson (0-2) went the distance for the Broncos, picking up the loss.
Sacramento State jumped out to a 3-0 lead but Santa Clara responded with a pair in the bottom of the third to cut into the deficit. Russell's RBI double to right center brought in Morgan Modesto to make it 3-2.
The Hornets stretched their lead back out to three runs on a two-run home run by Alas in the top of the fourth but the Broncos came back with three in the bottom of the frame to tie it at 5-all. Needham's two run double to right with two down was the big blow in the inning.
The Broncos conclude their part of the NorCal Kickoff with UC Santa Barbara tomorrow at noon.
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