Fresno State Softball Edges CSUB before Suffering Season-Ending Loss
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Fresno State rebounded from its NCAA opening deficit with an 8-5 win over Cal State Bakersfield before suffering a season-ending, 7-1 loss to Cal State Fullerton on Saturday night.
The Bulldogs (42-12-1) went 1-2 overall in postseason and earned its first NCAA Regional win since outscoring Nebraska in 2011. Both blemishes were charged to Cal State Fullerton (45-15) who will return to Easton Stadium to face 12-seeded UCLA for the Los Angeles Regional championship game on Sunday.
Game One: Fresno State 8, Cal State Bakersfield 5
Out of the gate, Fresno State garnered a three-run advantage on two hits and four Roadrunner errors. After stranding three runners on base an inning prior, Cal State Bakersfield cut their deficit by two runs on just their second hit of the day in the second inning.
The `Dogs added three runs on four hits in the third and an additional insurance run in the fourth. After allowing three runs in the fifth frame, Fresno State shutout the Roadrunners through the final two innings of play.
Six of the eight runs the Bulldogs put up were earned as leadoff batter Bria Kennedy (2-for-3) drove in three runs, Alyssa Villalpando (2-for-4) accounted for two RBIs and designated player Morgan Howe (2-for-3) was responsible for a solo run. The remaining pair were charged to the five defensive errors CSU Bakersfield committed.
Winning pitcher Jill Compton (25-6) earned her 31st start in the circle and tossed 4.1 innings before Kamalani Dung (8-0) made her first postseason appearance with the game-tying run coming to the plate in the fifth. Dung took down all eight batters faced and racked up five strikeouts in just 2.2 innings of work.
Fresno State owns the 6-1 all-time series against the Roadrunners, with the lone loss coming in 2013 as the visiting team in Bakersfield.
Game Two: Cal State Fullerton 7, Fresno State 1
The `Dogs made noise early in the second game with three hits in the first two frames which included a home run by Lindsey Willmon, her team-leading 12th of the season. Fresno State's lead was short-lived after Cal State Fullerton pushed two across on a double down the leftfield line in the bottom of the second.
From the circle, Dung made her second postseason appearance and first start of the tournament as she allowed two earned runs and struck out a pair of Titans.
CSUF put up two runs on a pair of bases-loaded walks in the fourth, and scored two runs on four hits before Taylor Langdon took over in the circle with two outs in the fifth. The senior righty tossed 1.1 innings and gave up one run with a strikeout in six batters faced.
Fullerton's six unanswered runs propelled them Sunday's action where they will have to beat UCLA twice in order to advance to Super Regionals. Despite three loses to the Titans this season, the Bulldogs hold the 41-35 all-time series record over Cal State Fullerton dating back to the 1981 season.
Overall during Regional play, Kennedy led the team going 4-for-8 (.500) with one double and three RBIs. The six additional extra base hits were registered by Howe (.429, 2B, RBI), Villalpando (.273, 2B, HR, 2 RBI), Willis (.200, HR, 2 RBI) and Willmon (.143, HR, RBI).