SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Eleni Spirakis had two hits and scored twice, and Kelsie Barnard drove in a pair during a three-run fifth inning rally that propelled Santa Clara softball to a 5-4 victory over Pacific on Sunday in the rubber game of the series.
Regan Dias (7-8) went the distance in the circle to earn the win for the Broncos (12-31, 4-5 West Coast Conference) after allowing 12 hits, but only one earned run and one walk.
Hailey Reed went 3-for-3 with an RBI and Madison Hopper, Madison Kahwaty and Carly Lucchetti each had two hits for the Tigers (16-30, 2-10) who twice erased early deficits, but were unable to hang on to the lead.
With Pacific trailing 2-1 in the top of the fourth, Santa Clara right fielder Emma Bickford made a spectacular diving catch in foul territory on Ralene Estrada's fly ball, but Caitlin Reynolds tagged up and scored from second and Talli Shepherd, on first base, was also able to cross the plate aided by a throwing error.
Bickford singled home Allyson Ferreira, who was running for Needham, to tie the score at 3-all. One batter later, Barnard sent a 3-1 pitch off starter Myka Sutherlin to right field to plate Russell and Bickford.
Reed had an RBI single in the sixth to cut the Santa Clara lead to one, but Dias induced three straight outs in the seventh after allowing a leadoff base hit to Hopper.
Sutherlin (5-8), who won in relief in the second game of Saturday's doubleheader split, suffered the loss. She lasted five innings, surrendering nine hits and five runs (all earned).
Spirakis scored after a leadoff double in the bottom of the first and her run in the third snapped a 1-all tie.
The Broncos face Cal at home on Wednesday. First pitch is set for 6 p.m.
The Broncos and Tigers close out their three-game series on Sunday. First pitch is set for noon.