April 30, 2006
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - It was a bittersweet Senior Day for the LMU class of 2006, as the Lions split a doubleheader with Santa Clara in PCSC action this afternoon at Smith Field. Margo Pineda and Hillaree Bennett hit back to back home runs to help LMU to a 6-1 victory in game one, but LMU allowed seven unearned runs in the bottom of the sixth to help the Broncos to the 11-3 game two victory.
In game one, Pineda broke a scoreless tie in the third inning with a solo home run to right field, her fifth of the season. Bennett followed her with a home run to left field. It is her 12th of the season, which is 3rd in LMU single season history.
Tiffany Pagano was strong in her start. She did not allow a hit until the fourth inning, and allowed just two hits in the first six innings of the game.
LMU added four insurance runs in the sixth. Kirsten Whitt was hit to open the inning and advanced to second on a stolen base. She moved to third on a perfectly placed bunt single by MiaSarah Cesena. The bases were loaded when Kirsten Slouber drew a walk, and Pineda brought two runs home with her single up the middle. Slouber and Pineda both moved up a base on a double steal, and then came home on an RBI single to left field by Brittany Bassett to give LMU a 6-0 lead.
The Broncos ruined Pagano's shutout bid with a run in the bottom of the seventh. Jessica Clee led off the inning with a double, and scored on Ashley Blier's RBI single to make it a 6-1 game. Santa Clara loaded the bases with one out, but Pagano struck out two straight batters to end the game and earn the victory.
The Lions outhit SCU 7-4, led by Pineda (2-for-4 with three RBI and two runs scored) and Cesena (2-for-3 with a run). Clee led SCU with two hits and the only run of the day.
Pagano (12-10) allowed one run on four hits with two walks and nine strikeouts. Liz Courter (9-14) took the loss for Santa Clara, allowing six runs on seven hits with four walks and eight strikeouts.
Game two looked to be going LMU's way early on. The Lions scored three runs in the top of the first inning, batting around the order. LMU took advantage of walks, wild pitches and an error to score the runs and take an early lead.
LMU was unable to add to its lead. The Lions had a runner in scoring position with no outs in the third, but they couldn't bring her home.
Senior Krystal Kehr started game two for LMU and was strong in her final home outing. However, with two outs in the second inning, she injured her ankle on a pitch and was forced to leave the game.
The Broncos scored their first run of the game in the fourth inning. Blier had an RBI single to score Clee to cut LMU's lead to 3-1.
SCU took the lead for good in the fifth inning. A bunt single, followed by a walk and another single loaded the bases. A sacrifice fly, an RBI fielder's choice and a steal at home gave Santa Clara a 4-3 lead.
The Lions had a golden opportunity to tie the game in the top of the sixth. Whitt led off the inning with a double to the gap in right center and advanced to third on a passed ball. However, LMU could not bring Whitt home to tie the game and went into the bottom of the inning down 4-3.
The Broncos took advantage of an LMU error in the bottom of the sixth inning, scoring seven unearned runs to invoke the run rule and end the game. The highlight of the inning for SCU was a grand slam by Clee. A RBI single up the middle by Noelani Hoopii gave the Broncos the eight run lead to end the game.
Samantha Lavino took the loss for the Lions, falling to 12-7 overall. Jackie Morales picked up the win for SCU, improving to 4-9.
Pineda added two hits and a run for LMU. Clee led the way for SCU, going 2-for-3 with five RBI and two runs. Angela Kabanuck and Hoopii each had two hits for the Broncos.
LMU falls to 27-19 overall, 7-6 in PCSC play. Santa Clara sits at 20-32 overall, 7-9 in the PCSC.
The Lions head to San Diego next weekend for a four game PCSC series.
- GO LIONS! -