TEMPE, Ariz. – Cal triumphed over Bradley 10-3 but fell to Creighton 6-4 to split a doubleheader Saturday morning at the Kajikawa Classic. The Bears improve to 2-1 in opening weekend of their 2014 campaign.
The Bears started their morning against Creighton, tallying just one hit – a single by Danielle Henderson -- and falling behind by six runs before starting a late rally in the sixth inning. Junior Cheyenne Cordes led off with a single before Henderson followed with a base hit of her own. Senior Victoria Jones drew a walk to load the bases as senior Jordan Wallace launched a long ball to clear the diamond and make the score 6-4.
Despite the late heroics, Cal could not overcome a strong performance by Creighton pitcher Becca Changstrom. The ace tossed six strikeouts and allowed five walks while giving up only four hits to deal the Bears their first loss of the season. Freshman Stephanie Trzcinski (0-1) was charged the loss for 1.2 innings of work, while freshman Katie Sutherland-Finch also saw time in the circle. Sutherland-Finch tallied five strikeouts and allowed two hits and no walks through 5.1 frames of work.
Against Bradley, Cal’s bats again took a few innings to warm up but came alive for the latter half of the game. With freshman Taylor Cotton tested in the circle to start the game, the Braves grabbed a 2-0 lead on a pair of walks that Baileigh Basham drove in with a triple. Cal brought in sophomore righty Nisa Ontiveros and the Bears played a tight defense the rest of the way.
At the top of the fourth, Henderson singled up the middle to reach base before Jones keyed in a home run to tie the game up. The Bears continued their successful half inning with a walk by Wallace and a base hit from freshman Alleah Laxamana. With two runners on, junior Breana Kostreba connected for a near-home run that barely missed clearing the fence and bounced back into play. Still, Kostreba reached second base safely while Wallace and Laxamana made their way home and Cal nabbed a 4-2 lead.
The Laxamana-Kostreba combo continued at the top of the sixth, starting with a double by Laxamana. Kostreba earned redemption for her lost home run with a long ball to send the pair home and make the score 6-2
The Bears added another four runs at the top of the seventh. With bases loaded, Wallace drove in a two-RBI double, and Laxamana and senior LaRisa Jones also batted in a runner for the 10-3 final.
Ontiveros earned the win for her seven innings pitched, whiffing seven, walking one and allowing five hits.
Laxamana led the team with three hits and three runs, and Wallace also had three runs in a 2-for-4 effort with six RBI for her double and home run. Kostreba recorded four RBI and a run in a 2-for-4 outing with her double and homer, and Henderson went 3-for-7 on the day with two runs scored.
Cal wraps up the Kajikawa against Portland State on field 3 at the Tempe Sports Complex at 11:30 a.m. PT. Sunday.
Follow the Bears on social media for behind-the-scenes action leading up to the season at:
· Facebook: Facebook.com/CalSoftball
· Twitter: @CalSoftball
· Instagram: @CalSoftball