Poets can’t hold lead; Fall in extras to No. 13 Redlands 6-5
Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
REDLANDS, Calif. – The Whittier College softball team wrapped up their 2011-12 campaign with an extra inning loss to Redlands University Saturday morning closing out the season 24-17, 13-11 SCIAC.
For the second straight day and for the sixth time this season the Poets have taken on the Bulldogs and finish the head to head series 2-4.
The Poets exploded for four runs in the first inning, putting Redlands in a hole early. Senior Nikki Mendoza led off with a triple to spearhead her 5-for-6 effort and was later driven in by Denisse Martinez with an RBI single. The Bulldogs managed to throw out two runners at the plate on two different occasions before sophomore Jordan Learn came through for the Poets, firing off a base-clearing double to left center that extended the Poet lead.
Despite being down early, the Bulldogs began chipping away at the deficit and managed to tie the game up at 4-4 in the 5th sparked by a Rikki Skates homer to center who capitalized off of a dropped foul ball by the Poets.
The Bulldogs then made the most of a pair of walks to lead off the game-changing fifth inning, as they quickly loaded the bases thanks to a bunt single by Janelle Carrasco. After a sacrifice fly brought in the first run of the inning, Redlands used heads-up base-running on a single to third base, which pushed two runs across the plate, as the Poets attempted to throw out the respective runners at both corners.
In the bottom of the sixth, Redlands took their first lead of the contest 5-4 when Molly Duran hit a shot to left but saw Whittier answer back in the top half of the seventh behind a sacrifice fly from Xzandra Miranda-Castro that drove in Cindy Loza that forced the game into extras.
The game remained scoreless through the 8th and 9th until Redlands' Amanda Lievanos connected on a walk-off homer in the bottom of the 10th, sending Redlands to the Championship Game.
Jessica Rosnack started on the mound for the Poets for her second straight appearance against the Bulldogs and went 4.1 innings giving up three earned runs on two hits. She was relieved by Courtney DeLano who went the final 4.2 innings and was charged with the loss after giving up two runs on six hits.
Kayla Uphold went the distance for the Bulldogs in the extended contest, recording her 19th win of the season. She allowed 12 hits and five runs while striking out four in 10 innings.