Home Runs Carry Long Beach State To Opening Game Win At UCSB
With a win Saturday, Long Beach State can win or share the Big West title.
May 9, 2014
Santa Barbara, Calif. - Four home runs, including back-to-back-to-back home runs and a go-ahead two-run shot by Lauren Lombardi helped Long Beach State earn an important 7-5 win in the first game of the day, but UCSB answered back with a 6-3 win in game two.
A wild start to game one kicked off the day. After a base hit by Shayna Kimbrough, Darian Tautalafua, Karli Sandoval and Ashlynn Booker each hit home runs to spot Long Beach State (37-17, 14-6 Big West) a 4-0 lead after a half an inning.
In the bottom half, however, the Gauchos loaded the bases, and a station-to-station single and a bases clearing error put UC Santa Barbara (34-19, 14-6 Big West) in the lead 5-4.
Erin Jones-Wesely fought through various jams during the game, stranding 10 and striking out nine to help carry the 49ers through six scoreless innings on defense.
In the sixth inning, a leadoff single by Hannah De Gaetano, followed by a double from Shayna Kimbrough tied the game in the sixth. The Beach then scored two more in the top of the seventh, as Lauren Lombardi broke the tie with a two-run home run, the fourth homer of the game for LBSU.
Jones-Wesley finished off the bottom of the seventh to collect the win, the 19th of the season for the senior.
In game two, UCSB took an early 1-0 lead on a sacrifice fly from MeShalon Moore, but the 49ers were able to answer back in the third inning. Cya Neal started the inning with a bunt single, and then scored on a double from Tautalafua to tie the game. The 49ers loaded the bases, and then added two more runs on a bases-loaded walk and an RBI groundout to take a 3-1 lead.
UCSB answered straight back with a big inning in the fourth, scoring five runs, four unearned after an error from Tautalafua to take a 6-3 lead. Shelby Wisdom held off the 49ers the rest of the way for a complete game victory for the Gauchos.
Long Beach State still has the chance to capture at least a share of the Big West Championship, or the title outright tomorrow with a win against UC Santa Barbara. Cal Poly can share the title with a sweep of UC Riverside, while the winner of Saturday's game between UCSB and LBSU is guaranteed at least a tie at the top of the standings.
First pitch is scheduled for Noon.
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