Santa Clara starts conference play with series win over Gaels
The Santa Clara
April 13, 2017
Sunday’s 4-2 win over St. Mary’s College gave Santa Clara Softball their first series victory in West Coast Conference play.
The result came after a split doubleheader on Saturday in a pair of close games, improving the Broncos’ overall record to 10-24.
Starting pitcher Aubree Kim improved to a 3-8 record after Sunday and Ciara Gonzalez picked up her third save of the season.
Sunday’s victory was in a come-frombehind fashion for the Broncos, who found themselves in a 2-0 hole by the fourth inning. Junior Ellie Fisher sparked the offense for the Broncos in the fifth with a single and stolen base.
Eleni Spirakis doubled to bring her in and Santa Clara scored two runs during the fifth frame to take a 3-2 lead.
Fisher kept rolling in the sixth with a triple and later scored her second run of the game to get the game to its final score of 4-2.
Fisher is currently second in the WCC in hits with 42 and third in batting average at .383, an individual performance to celebrate amidst an otherwise disappointing non-conference run by the team as a whole.
“Our non-conference schedule was busy and long, but in the end, it’s preparing us for what is important, which is conference games,” said Fisher. “Winning our first series is a great feeling. I was so proud of all of my teammates for coming together and pulling out these wins.”
Fisher is performing at an all-conference caliber so far this season. She credits her success of late as mostly a mental adjustment.
“I have been more relaxed going up to the plate and feeling confident in my play,” Fisher said. “Being with my teammates and just having fun playing the game helped me a lot this weekend.”
The series was definitely a dogfight with Saint Mary’s as neither team won a game in convincing fashion. Still, all that matters at the end of the day is securing the W.
“We were kind of disappointed after losing the second game and knew that we had win the final game of the series,” said Fisher. “We were losing at first in the last game, but we had one big inning, which brought our spirits back up.”
Coach Lisa Mize echoed her star players emphasis on the importance of starting conference play on the right foot.
“Those were huge wins for us, it was a great way to start conference,” said Coach Mize. “Hoping that the momentum will give us an edge as we head into the next conference series.”
The Broncos will welcome Fresno State on Thursday night at 6 p.m. before resuming conference play over the weekend.
Santa Clara will host conference last-place Loyola Marymount (14-25, 0-3) for a doubleheader on Friday afternoon at 2:00 and 4:00 p.m., with the final game on Saturday at 12:00 p.m.
The series represents another opportunity for the Broncos to get their season back on track and move up in the WCC standings.
Contact Bo Kendall at firstname.lastname@example.org