March 13, 2013
The No. 5/4 California softball team snagged its first victory over a ranked opponent Wednesday, beating No. 19/15 Baylor 3-0 in Cal's first game at the Chevron Spring Fling in Honolulu, Hawai'i.
In her eighth start of the season for the Blue and Gold, junior Ashley Decker recorded two of the team's three runs, going 2-for-2 against the Lady Bears with two singles. Junior teammate LaRisa Jones, in to pinch run for senior Lindsey Ziegenhirt, scored the team's third.
Against Baylor ace Whitney Canion, who tossed her fourth career no-hitter last weekend, the Bears picked up five total hits. Ziegenhirt, junior Victoria Jones and senior Jolene Henderson registered hits along with Decker. Canion (11-3) struck out seven Golden Bear batters while allowing five hits and one walk. Henderson (17-2) also started in her main role for the Golden Bears, pitching the entirety of the game with three hits and three strikeouts and no walks.
California seized its first opportunity to score at the bottom of the first. Decker singled to left center before a fortuitous error by Baylor's right fielder on a fly ball by sophomore Danielle Henderson allowed her to round the bases.
The Golden Bears solidified their lead with two crucial runs at the bottom of the sixth. Decker got a free base after she was hit by a pitch, then moved to second on a single to center field by Ziegenhirt. With L. Jones in to pinch run for Ziegenhirt, J. Henderson hit a strong ball down the right field line. She nearly tripled but tripped on second base for a double as both Decker and Jones crossed home plate to give the Bears a three-run cushion heading into the final inning.
Baylor was unable to get its bats moving at the top of the seventh and California claimed its 20th consecutive victory of 2013.
The Bears continue their tropical excursion with another game against a ranked opponent on Thursday. Cal will face No. 20/23 Hawai'i at 9 p.m. PT.
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