No Love for the Broncos on Valentines Day

Game 1
RIVERSIDE, Calif. - The location changed, but the result stayed the same as the Boise State softball team dropped another heartbreaker to San Diego, 4-3. The Broncos (1-2) broke their silence in the later innings but were done in by a big third inning for the Toreros (3-0).

Sophomore Allie Crump retired eight of the first nine batters she faced, but hit another road bump with two outs in the third inning. After hitting a batter and walking the next batter, Crump gave up a single and three-run home run to give the Toreros a quick four runs and a 4-0 lead in the game. After that, Crump issued another walk but then recorded one of her five strikeouts in the game to end the inning. She also breezed through the fourth inning before giving way to Lela Work.

It was just a blip in an otherwise impressive four innings of work for Crump, allowing only two hits and striking out five in four innings. However, it was more than enough to give the Toreros their second straight victory over the Broncos in as many days.

The Broncos tried to fight back in the fifth, but came up just short with a three run burst. A pair of seniors, Laeha Hill and Jessi Hanna, collected RBI singles and Tazz Weatherly scored on an error to pull the Broncos within one, but the Broncos remained scoreless over the final two frames.

Work continued to look impressive in the circle as she held the Toreros scoreless in three innings of relief to keep the Broncos in the game. Work allowed four hits and struck out three. She has now started her college career with a five-inning scoreless streak.

The Broncos had a quick turnaround and are now taking on UC Riverside in their final game of the weekend.

Game 2

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - For the third consecutive game, the Boise State softball team was handed a one-run loss. On Sunday afternoon, it came from UC Riverside in the form of a game-winning RBI-single with two outs in the bottom of the seventh. The Broncos (1-3) outscored their opponents 24-23 this weekend but couldn't seem to find a win in three straight nailbiters.

The game winner came at the end of a seesaw battle that had three lead changes. The Broncos took the early lead with a two-run homer for Kathy Cox, her second homer of the weekend. However, the Highlanders (1-2) had the Broncos' pitchers figured out as they posted four runs in the bottom half of the inning to take a 4-2 lead.

The Broncos came roaring back in the top of the second with another three runs. Kelly Sweeney led off the inning with a triple to give the Broncos an early threat. Sweeney and Laeha Hill scored on errors to tie the game back up at 4-4. Christina Capobianco stroked an RBI single up the middle to give the Broncos a 5-4 advantage.

Lela Work entered the game in relief for the bottom of the second and extended her scoreless inning streak to six with another shutout inning. The Highlanders didn't stay quiet for long as they broke the freshman's streak at six innings when they tied the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the third. The Highlanders chased work in the next frame with three quick runs to give them an 8-5 lead.

Allie Crump entered the game with one out in the fourth and extinguished the Highlanders offensive explosion. Crump allowed only two hits over the next two innings to keep the Highlanders at bay while the Broncos crawled back into the game. Tazz Weatherly gave the Broncos a boost with her first career homer. Weatherly blasted a pitch over the left field wall in the fifth inning to cut the lead to 8-7. Brittany Barcellos got the Broncos back in the game by scoring on a passed ball to knot the game at 8-8. The Broncos had a chance to retake the lead, but the Highlanders cut down Holly Bourke at home to preserve the tie.

The Broncos were shut down in the seventh and the Highlanders used a lead off double to capture their first victory of the season.

The Broncos will have a short time off as they travel to Las Vegas, Nev. for the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic on Feb. 18-20. The Broncos will face a heavy test in No. 10/11 Oklahoma as well as Long Beach State and UNLV, who both made the NCAA Tournament last year.

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