TEMPE, Ariz.-Lela Work picked up her first win and first save of the season Saturday, helping Boise State softball win two games at the Wilson/DeMarini Invitational. The Broncos (12-7) took down Creighton 6-3, before besting North Dakota State 7-4. Devon Bridges had a pair of multi-hit games, including a home run in each.
Boise State 6 Creighton 3
Work pitched six sterling innings over two appearances against the Bluejays, allowing one hit, no walks and striking out 10. Work allowed a single to Creighton's first hitter of the game before dialing in for a dominant stay in the circle. She retired the next 15 batters, including nine via strikeout and only two balls in play left the infield. She left after five innings with a 6-0 lead as the Bronco offense helped her out early and often.
In the first inning, Kellie Caplan walked, stole second and came around to score on Christina Capobianco's single through the right side. The second inning brought another run when Jordan Kreiger drew a bases-loaded walk, but the Broncos left three stranded in the inning.
Bridges led off the third inning pulling a home run to left field. Later in the inning Allie Crump stepped in with one out and two on and hit her first home run of the season to make it a four-run inning and a six-run lead.
The Broncos threatened again in the top of the sixth with singles from Capobianco and Bridges. The pair executed a double steal to each move into scoring position, but that is where they would stay.
Crump picked up where Work left off in the sixth, sitting the Bluejays down in order, before hitting a rough patch to start the seventh. A walk, a double and a home run put Creighton on the board and cut the Boise State lead to 6-3. Work returned to the game and got the next three batters out to end the game.
Boise State 7 North Dakota State 4
The Broncos scored in each of their final three at bats to fend off North Dakota State and win 7-4.
Aubray Zell earned the win in the circle after getting the start and throwing five innings. Zell allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits and one walk. She also struck out eight a day after registering a season-high nine punch outs against Arizona State.
Work tossed the final two innings, surrendering an unearned run on one hit to record her first save of the season. She set a school record and ranked eighth nationally in 2011 with six saves.
Tara Glover put the Broncos up early with a run in the bottom of the first. Glover led off with a triple to center and would cross the plate on a wild pitch. It was her third triple of the year, a single-season school record.
The lead lasted until North Dakota State manufactured a run in the top of the third inning. The Bison used an error, sacrifice and groundout to put a runner at third base. A two-out single brought her in and knotted the game.
Holly Bourke led off the fourth inning with a double and after an out and a walk, Crump doubled her in. With runners on second and third, Megan Harvey delivered a pinch-hit, RBI single for the second time in as many days. Glover followed with a sacrifice fly and the Broncos had a 4-1 advantage.
The Bison cut into the lead in the top of the fifth inning with two runs. They were looking to tie the game with a runner at third and one out. On a groundball to the left side, shortstop Mackenzie Whyte alertly checked the runner at third and caught her off the bag. The lead runner was eventually tagged out between third and home for the second out.
The Broncos headed to the bottom of the fifth clinging to a one-run lead, but Bridges immediately answered with her second leadoff home run of the day.
North Dakota State-who has advanced to the NCAA Tournament the past three years-did not go away, squeezing an unearned run out of the sixth inning to cut the margin back to one at 5-4.
The Broncos had yet another answer in the sixth, as hits by Glover and Caplan set up a sacrifice fly for Capobianco and an RBI single for Bridges to extend the Boise State lead to 7-4.
Boise State wraps up its trip to Arizona Sunday, with a 9 a.m. (MT) game against Wichita State.
Saturday marks the second time this season Boise State has won two games on the same day...Tara Glover has hit safely in 18 of the Broncos' 19 games, including 11 multi-hit games...Allie Crump's home run against Creighton was her first three-run shot in nearly two years; of her career-best 10 home runs in 2011, seven were solo homers and three came with one runner on.