CLAREMONT, CA. – The Pomona-Pitzer Softball Team finished their Friday series against No. 4 Linfield with a win and a draw, putting up seven runs in both games. In a close series where either side could have emerged victorious, the Sagehens finished with the advantage with a dominant victory in game one and a comeback tie in the second. Liz Rodarte had a phenomenal day at the plate, hitting a home run in each game and delivering four RBI total. She also pitched 10 total innings with only one earned run.
Season Impact: The Sagehens are now 5-0-1 overall this season.
Pomona-Pitzer 7, Linfield 3
The Sagehens struck first in the bottom of the third inning when Liz Rodarte crushed her second home run of the season over left-center field. However, the Wildcats quickly struck back with a leadoff solo homerun in the top of the fourth to tie the game.
After the home run, Wildcats' Darian Stedman laced a sharp grounder towards the right-middle, but Kristen Hong made a incredible sliding stop and threw her out to keep the bases empty.
At the bottom of the fourth, the Sagehens strung a big rally. With one out, Julia Carreon smacked a double to left field and Makensey Druckman followed with a single to put runners at the corners. The hot-hitting Baleigh McCuskey caught the Wildcats' defense by surprise, dropping a suicide squeeze bunt to bring in the go-ahead run. Later with two outs and the bases loaded, Olivia Campion laced an RBI line drive double to left to bring in two runs, giving the Sagehens a 4-1 lead.
Linfield cut the deficit to one run after scoring twice on an error in the top of the fifth inning. However, Carreon came through with the insurance in the bottom of the same inning, hitting a deep RBI single to right field to make it 5-3.
The Wildcats almost threatened in the top of the sixth when they loaded the bases with two outs, but Rodarte calmly induced a groundout to escape the jam. In the bottom of the sixth, the Sagehens broke out with another rally as Megan Otsuka scored from third on a wild pitch. Izzy Deatherage put the cap on the game with an RBI double to extend the lead 7-3.
Rodarte calmly held the Wildcats scoreless in the seventh to clinch game one.
Pomona-Pitzer 7, Linfield 7 (8 Innings)
The Wildcats took an early lead off an RBI single in the top of the first, but the Sagehens roared back in the bottom of the same inning. With two outs, Liz Rodarte repeated what she did in the prior game, launching a solo shot over left center to tie the game.
After a single by Deatherage, Karina Falkstrom proceeded to crush a line drive over the batter's eye for a two-run home run to make it 4-1.
With runners on second and third in the top of the third, Makenna Clizer looped a single to center to bring the Wildcats within one. They tied the game in the top of the fifth after drawing a bases-loaded walk.
In the top of the sixth, the Wildcats took the lead after Shakayla Snyder belted a three-run home run to make it 7-4.
The Sagehens rallied back in the bottom of the seventh, with two outs. With runners on second and third, Falkstrom reached first off an error by the second baseman to bring in one run. Carreon followed with a sharp RBI single to right field to bring in one more. After Druckman got hit by a pitch to load the bases, McCuskey slapped a single to right field to tie the game.
Rodarte shut out the Wildcats in the top of the eighth inning, and the game was called due to the sunset.
Up Next: The Sagehens will next face Occidental College at home tomorrow for a doubleheader, with the first game at 12:00 p.m. and the second at 2:00 p.m.
(Video Courtesy of Myles Druckman)