May 11, 2013
The senior foursome of Dana Garcia, Emily Gregorio, Brianna Stephan and Nalani St. Germain concluded their home careers with two wins as Long Beach State (37-20, 17-7 Big West) defeated Fresno State (30-24) 4-3 and 3-2 on Saturday afternoon.
Game 1: LBSU 4, Fresno State 3
Pitcher Erin Jones-Wesley walked the first Fresno State batter to start the game and after an error by Dana Garcia, the runner was able to score to give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead. The 49ers answered in the bottom of the second after a single by Ashley Holmes was followed by a big double by Garcia, which brought in Holmes for the tying run.
Jones-Wesley's bid for a no-hitter ended in the top of the third after Fresno State's Vonnie Martin hit a solo home run to right field to put the Bulldogs back in the lead (2-1).
Still trailing 2-1 in the bottom of the fifth, Shayna Kimbrough singled up the middle to lead off the 49ers. Leilani Tupua-Tautalatasi followed with a double to right center, bringing in Kimbrough to tie the game at two all. Darian Tautalafua then drilled her 13th home run of the season off of the scoreboard to give the 49ers a 4-2 lead.
Fresno State responded in the top of the seventh with a triple over the outstretched glove of Tautalafua, and then scored a run after a sacrifice fly to left field, closing to 4-3, but LBSU would hold on to win the game.
Jones-Wesley got the win, nothing her 20th of the season and 65th in her career at LBSU. Tautalafua's home run moved her into a tie for second in the LBSU single season record books.
Game 2: LBSU 3, Fresno State 2
Both teams were held scoreless through three innings in the second game before a solo home run by Fresno State's Stesha Brazil in the top of the fourth put the Bulldogs on the board first.
The 49ers answered in the bottom of the inning as Tupua-Tautalatasi led off by being hit by a pitch to get on base. Tautalafua reached base on a fielder's choice, while Tupua-Tautalatasi moved over to second after an error by the second baseman. Karli Sandoval then drilled her 10th home run of the season to bring in three RBI as LBSU took a 3-1 lead.
After a scoreless fifth inning for both teams, Fresno State hit another solo home run to bring the game within 3-2, but a strike out by Amanda Hansen ended the Bulldog at bat. The 49ers went three up and three down in the bottom of the inning, sending the game to the top of the seventh. Hansen then knocked off the Bulldog top of the order, ending the game with another 49er victory.
Hansen finishes the regular season with a record of 10-7. Sandoval's 10th home run of the season moves her into a tie for fourth on the LBSU single season record books.
Hawai'i won the Big West title on Friday after taking two games at Pacific and now the 49ers will have to wait and see if they are selected for an at-large bid into the NCAA field. The selection show will be televised live on ESPNU at 7:00 pm (PT) on Sunday.
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