Broncos Outlast Bulldogs
March 26, 2017

Box Score

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    FRESNO, Calif. - Makenzie Sullivan's ninth-inning, one-out double scored Rebekah Cervantes to break a 1-1 deadlock as Boise State averted a sweep by Fresno State and snapped an eight-game slide against the Bulldogs with a 2-1 victory at Margie Wright Diamond.

    "It shows a lot of character. We're still a young team. We do have a number of seniors but as a whole we're still a young team. To see that maturity in how we flipped it is very promising," Boise State head coach Cindy Ball said in regards to her team coming back to salvage a key game. "If we come with that approach the rest of the season, it is going to be very competitive. I was very encouraged by that and proud of them. That took guts, and it was one of our hugest challenges all year."

    Freshman pitcher Kelsey Broadus set the Bulldogs down in order in the ninth to pick up her fourth win of the season. Broadus went the final three and two-thirds innings, striking out three, and, despite allowing a hit and four walks, stranded six Bulldog runners to improve to 4-0.

    Bronco starter Christina Washington went five and two-thirds, allowing a run on five hits with a pair of strikeouts. Fresno State's Kamalani Dung dropped to 14-7 on the season despite going the distance and allowing just four hits with five strikeouts.

    "The fight from our team was awesome to see. We still didn't have a lot go the way we'd want it to go but we kept picking away. The way Chrsitina and Kelsey threw today kept us confident the entire way," Ball said. "Kelsey really turned a corner this weekend and kept us in the game. She did well yesterday and again today. I have to really say that I saw some good fight in turning the momentum around from quite a few of our pitchers this weekend."

    Cervantes, who had two of Boise State's four hits in the contest, broke scoreless run with solo homer in the sixth but the Bulldogs got a bases-loaded walk from Vanessa Hernandez to even things up in the bottom half. Singles from Morgan Howe and Chase Leehong put two on with one out, and the runners moved to second and third on a wild pitch. After an intentional walk to Kierra Willis loaded the bases to set up a force at the plate, Washington was relieved by Broadus, who was taken to a full count by Hernandez before issuing the game-tying walk.

    "It's been a different all year as they've been very consistent. They'd been a little quiet the whole series but they came through at the right time. That's what this game is when you face good pitching," Ball said about Cervantes and Sullivan. "And good for Becky, it's right by her hometown, and she had a lot of people here and really turned it on."

    Broadus limited any further damage by striking out Schulyer Broussard and getting Katie Castellon to fly out. In the seventh, the Bulldogs put two on with two out but Broadus got Leehong to pop up, and in the eighth inning Fresno State got inning-opening walks from Willis and Hernandez but again Broadus came through, striking out Broussard and inducing a 4-6-3 double play from Castellon.

    The Broncos finally pulled ahead for good in the ninth, as Cervantes beat out and infield single to shortstop and took second as Castellon's throw went over the head of Leehong at first, and Sullivan followed with the RBI double to right.

    Fresno State (22-11, 4-2 MW), which stranded 11 runners on base over the contest, came close to opening the scoring with runners at the corners and one out in the fifth, but the Bronco defense sniffed out a double-steal attempt and got pinch-runner Christina Rodriguez at the plate.

    Boise State (21-9, 3-3 MW) returns to Dona Larsen Park next weekend, hosting Utah State for a three-game set beginning Friday at 4 p.m. MT.

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