CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. – Despite a three-run blast by junior Danielle Henderson, Texas A&M supplied back-to-back homers and then some to overpower Cal 10-6 Friday afternoon at the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic in Palm Springs. With the loss, Cal moves to 5-5 and Texas A&M is 11-3.
The Aggies jumped out with the lead at the top of the first with a quick two runs when Nicole Morgan tripled to right field with a runner on, and then came home in the same play sequence after a throwing error by the Cal defense.
The score remained stagnant until the bottom of the third, starting with back-to-back singles from junior Cheyenne Cordes and freshman Kylie Reed. Junior Danielle Henderson stepped up to the plate and served up a three-RBI homer to left field, and the Bears were on the board.
The Aggies responded with a five-run top of the fourth. With the bases loaded, Emily Albus doubled to the outfield to drive in two of her teammates. A base hit by April Ryan sent Albus and another Aggie teammate to the dish to add another two runs, and with a sacrifice fly that brough Ryan home the Aggies went up 7-3.
Cal's batters had some success catching up at the bottom of the fourth when a trio of singles by freshman Alleah Laxamana and seniors Jordan Wallace and LaRisa Jones loaded the bases. Junior Cheyenne Cordes popped a sac fly to score Laxamana, and another two Bears scored runs when a throwing error by Aggie pitcher Katie Marks allowed freshman Kylie Reed to get on base safely. After four full frames, Texas A&M led just 7-6.
The Aggies tacked on two more at the top of the fifth with back-to-back homers from Breanna Dozier and Cali Lanphear. The team's final run came at the top of the seventh with another single up the middle by Albus with two runners on for an RBI.
Cordes led the Bears offensively, finishing 2-for-2 with one walk, one sac fly, one RBI and one run scored. Henderson finished 1-for-3 with three RBI and a run scored. While Cal tallied seven hits, the Aggies put up 14.
The Aggies' Abby Donnell earned the win and improved to 3-0 in the circle, with the save going to Marks, while Nisa Ontiveros suffered the loss (3-2). Ontiveros pitched 3.1 innings and allowed seven hits and six runs with one walk, and freshman Katie Sutherland-Finch, who came in to relieve her at the top of the fourth, pitched 3.2 innings with seven hits, four runs and three walks allowed, plus two strikeouts.
Cal will take the field for two games on Saturday starting with No. 24 Notre Dame at noon. and No. 15 Baylor at 3 p.m.
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