April 13, 2013
LOS ANGELES - It was déjà vu for the No. 9/8 Golden Bears (32-8, 7-5 Pac-12) all over again when a 1-1 tied game with No. 19/21 Bruins (28-14, 5-10 Pac-12) at the bottom of the seventh sent the Bears into a program-first, third-consecutive extra-inning game, but this time it was the Bears who came away with the victory. California beat UCLA 5-1 in ten innings Saturday at Easton Stadium in Los Angeles.
Senior Jolene Henderson (27-7) pitched the Bears all the way to the win using five strikeouts while allowing five hits, four walks and one unearned run. She did double duty by dealing the Bruins the death blow with a three-run homer in the tenth inning with her only hit of the day after senior batterymate Lindsey Ziegenhirt sacrificed her at-bat with a fly ball to drive in the tie-breaking run. Sophomore Cheyenne Cordes had a big day at the plate, going 3-for-5 with two doubles and two runs. Junior Victoria Jones also went 3-for-5 and freshman Khala Taylor went 1-for-4 with the tie-breaking run.
UCLA's Ally Carda (19-7) was charged the loss for pitching the final seven innings, fanning eight while giving up five hits and four runs. Paige McDuffee started, allowing the first three hits and one run.
Cordes started the Bears off right with a double to right field, and a sacrifice bunt by junior Britt Vonkput her within a quick dash to home plate. Cordes closed that gap on a wild pitch for one California run.
In UCLA's half of the first inning, B.B. Bates led off with a single up the middle, advancing to second on Carda's base hit. Jessica Hall gained first base on a fielder's choice to the shortstop Cordes, and as Cordes threw Carda out at second, Bates advanced to third then scored on a throwing error from second to first.
The scoreboard read zeroes through the next six frames, sending the game into extra innings for a 26th inning of play in after nine-inning games on Thursday and Friday. The eighth and ninth innings also passed without a run scored, sending the game into inning No. 10.
Taylor started the comeback with a single to left field, and Cordes made it back-to-back hits with her own single to the left. Vonk attempted to sacrifice bunt the baserunners forward, receiving a fielder's choice for her efforts as she reached first safely when the Bruins could not get the lead runner out in time. The bases were loaded as Ziegenhirt stepped up to the plate, and though her high, deep ball didn't clear the fence, it was caught far enough out for Taylor to tag up and come in for the first run since the first inning. With two runners on, the Bears served the Bruins a tall order to fill when Henderson delivered a base-clearing long ball down the left line for a 5-1 score. It was an order UCLA did not come close to filling at the bottom of the 10th.
Cal returns to Levine-Fricke Field for a four-game homestand beginning Wednesday with Santa Clara at 3 p.m. followed by a series against Oregon State on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Follow Cal Softball on Twitter and Facebook for updates throughout the season.