Broncos Drop Two In Final At-Bats Thursday
Feb. 26, 2015
LAKEWOOD, Calif. - Boise State's first day at the Long Beach Louisville Slugger Invitational was one of heartbreak as the Broncos dropped two games in their opponents' final at-bats at Mayfair Park in Lakewood. First, a walk-off home run sent the Broncos to a 4-2 loss to Wichita State before Seattle University scored in the first extra frame for a 4-3, eight-inning win in the afternoon.
Bronco pitchers Rachel Rodriguez (6.2 innings against Wichita State) and Mackenzie McGill (6.0 innings against Seattle) put in commendable starts in the circle, but late-inning heroics by the Shockers and Redhawks went against Boise State, which is now 5-12 on the season.
Boise State continues tournament action Friday at 49er Softball Complex at Long Beach State. The Broncos face off with Portland State at 12:30 p.m. MT before ending the day against Weber State at 3 p.m. MT.
Wichita State 4, Boise State 2: Macklin Hitz' three-run homer in the bottom of the seventh capped a two-out, four-run rally for Wichita State as the Shockers (8-7) handed Boise State a heartbreaking 4-2 loss in Thursday's opener.
Bronco starter Rachel Rodriguez got the first two outs of the frame in quick fashion before three straight singles from Kelli Spring, Brittany Fortner and Liz Broyles plated a run and put the winning run on second. Hitz, 0-for-2 to that point, sent a 2-0 offering from Rodriguez over the fence in left for the win.
Rodriguez, who dropped to 2-4 on the year with the loss, had given up just four hits and stranded eight Shocker runners prior to the seventh. She ended the game with four runs given up on eight hits with a strikeout. She also went 1-for-3 with an RBI single at the plate.
The Broncos got both runs in the top of the fourth thanks to a Shocker error. Izzy Serrano led off the frame reaching on a fielding error by Shocker pitcher Katie Malone, then was pinch-run for by Lindsey Nicholson. Devon Bridges walked and was replaced by pinch-runner Kaelie Doyle, putting two on with none out.
After Sara Ketelsleger dropped a sacrifice bunt to advance the runners, Nicholson came in to score on Makenzie Sullivan's groundout to third. After Ashley Palmer's line drive off of Malone's glove resulted in an infield single and put runners on the corners, Rodriguez slapped a shot into right to plate Doyle from third.
Teauna Hughes had two hits to lead the Broncos.
Seattle University 4, Boise State 3 (8): Boise State fought back to level ground with Seattle University twice in Thursday's second game, but wouldn't get the chance to do it a third time as the Redhawks scored the game-winner in the bottom of the eighth for a 4-3 win.
With a runner spotted at second to begin the extra frame, Redhawks pinch-runner Rose Saenz got to third on a wild pitch by Nicole Wilson, then scored on Isabella Geronimo's infield single that scorched off the glove of Makenzie Sullivan at third.
Boise State, which dropped its eighth decision over its last nine, left nine runners on base in the contest, included one in scoring position in each of the last four innings, and one on third base in both the seventh and eighth frames.
The Broncos got a leadoff double from Shaelee Pearson in the seventh, but after sacrificing her to third, left her there as Sullivan flew out to center and Devon Bridges grounded out to second. In the eighth, Corey Hendrickson, running as the spotted baserunner for Bridges, was sacrificed to third before Jordan Kreiger walked to put runners at the corners with just one out. The Bronco half would end on a tough break, as Makenna Weir lined out to third, and Seattle third baseman Maddy Kristjanson fired to first to double off Kreiger.
Wilson took the loss, dropping her to 0-2, after going one-plus inning. Wilson came on for starter Mackenzie McGill with one on and none out in the seventh, got two quick outs, then after a pair of walks got Breanna Timmons to fly to left to end the frame.
McGill went six innings, giving up three runs on six hits, coming out after walking Kayla Shuster-Gonzales to begin the seventh.
Seattle struck for two runs in the first inning, as Bubba Morrow doubled home Paige Bouska then came around on Lisa Maulden's double to right-center.
The Broncos answered their next time up in the top of the second with a two-out rally. Kreiger walked and went to second on a wild pitch by Redhawk starter Mandie Sugita, then came home on Weir's single to left. Lindsey Nicholson would lift a fly ball into the gap in right-center, and a miscommunication between Shuster-Gonzales and Erika Rodgers allowed the ball to fall in between them, scoring Weir and putting Nicholson at third with a triple.
Seattle loaded the bases with one out in the third and scored its third run on a sacrifice fly from Timmons, who led the Redhawks with two hits in the contest. Timmons' slicing liner was headed into foul territory when Nicholson went full horizontal to make the diving catch. Shuster-Gonzales came home on the play to give the Redhawks the lead, but two batters later McGill would get Bouska to line out to left to leave the bases loaded.
Boise State came level again with its third and final run of the game in the fourth. Kreiger doubled with one out and scored on Weir's base hit through the left side.
Weir posted a strong effort with two hits and two RBI, while Kayla Clausen went 2-for-2 at the plate. Kreiger went 1-for-2 with a double and scored twice.
Sugita took the win for the Redhawks (6-9), improving to 4-2 on the year.
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