Rebels Leave Toreros Battered And Blue
Feb. 26, 2012
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. (UNLVRebels.com) - The UNLV Rebels (7-7) scored seven runs over the final four innings to knock off the San Diego Toreros (3-6) in a 7-3 decision on the final day of UC Santa Barbara's Gaucho Classic I held at Campus Diamond. UNLV's offense scattered a season-high 11 hits off of USD pitching, and scored seven runs, which tied the team's highest output of 2012.
The Rebel offense was paced by a 3-for-4 effort from Stefany Valentino and two hits by Pauline Monreal. The pair combined to knock in five of the team's seven RBI in the game. Valentino had a two-run single in the sixth, while Monreal had a run-scoring single in the fourth and a two-run homer in the sixth.
After a scoreless first inning, USD loaded up the bases off of three singles in the second, but its runner at first base was quickly called out due to leaving the bag early. With two runners still in scoring position, Amanda Oliveto (5-4) induced a grounder to second for another out. After the out was recorded at first base, the Toreros were caught in a run down by Tayler Van Acker. Unfortunately, USD got a bit of luck and was able to score on the play for the game's first run.
UNLV's offense came to life in the fourth behind two hits and a hit by pitch. Tayler Van Acker got things going after she reached on a fielder's choice. Kylie Wagner then was plunked by an offering from Jenny Lahitte (1-3) to put two on the base paths. Emilie Valadez was then inserted into the lineup to pinch-run for Van Acker and quickly motored around the bases on Monreal's seeing-eye single up the middle.
The Rebels took the lead for good off a sacrifice fly by Tayler Aleman. Paige Emerson and Valentino started off the frame with back-to-back, one-out singles. The pair moved up a base when Lahitte uncorked a wild pitch. Aleman then hit her deep fly to right to break the stalemate.
The two teams combined to score five runs in the sixth. Jaexie Balilea led off the inning with a solo homer to left, which spelled the end of Lahitte's day in the circle. Kaitlin Healy entered the contest in relief, but was rudely greeted by infield singles from Samantha Juarez and Christina Montoya. Healy then loaded the bases up when she hit Emerson with a pitch. Valentino then singled up the middle to bring home two more scores and increased the Rebel lead to four runs.
After USD got a two-run double to bring the score to 5-3 in favor of the Scarlet & Gray, the Rebels quickly added those runs back in the seventh on Monreal's long ball. Balilea scored on the dinger after reaching via a fielder's choice.
Oliveto earned her third win of the weekend with her complete-game effort against USD. She allowed three runs off of six hits, but struck out seven against three walks.
Lahitte was saddled with the loss in five innings of work. She was touched for three runs on seven hits. She struck out four and walked two.
Healy didn't fare any better than her predecessor. She threw two frames, but surrendered four runs on four hits with one walk.
UNLV returns to action next Friday, March 2, with a pair of games in its own Eller Media Stadium Classic. The Rebels open up with Seton Hall (3:45 pm), which will be followed by a contest against New Mexico State (6:00 pm). Florida Atlantic and Illinois round out the five-team contingent at the three-day tournament.