STOCKTON, Calif. - Eleven hits helped the Tigers get past UC Santa Barbara on Wednesday afternoon 6-3 to advance in the NISC postseason. The Tigers will now face the loser of Cal Poly vs Nevada tonight at 7 PM with a chance to advance to the regional Championship.
Hailey Reed tossed all seven innings in the win, striking out five while allowing just three earned. Caitlyn Sung, Sydney Lahners and Haylee Moran-Rowen all had a pair of hits while Rachel Sellers and Molly Bourne added two RBIs each in the victory. The win brings the Tigers to 28-25 on the year while the loss drops UC Santa Barbara 31-28 on the year and eliminates them from the NISC postseason.
Both teams traded baserunners in the first two innings, with Hailey Reed starting off the third inning with a strikeout of Lujan, one of her five on the afternoon. With one down in the fourth Cassidy Gustafson reached on a fielder's choice, and next batter Rachel Sellers plated her for the first run of the game on a double to right-center.
Samantha Owen led off the fifth with a single to right and advanced to second on Ralene Estrada's sacrifice bunt. An infield single by Haylee Moran-Rowen moved Owen to third. Caitlyn Sung walked to load the bases and with two down, Sydney Lahners worked a walk of her own to force in a run and Gustafson followed with a hit-by-pitch to bring the score to 3-0. Another walk to Sellers extended the Tiger lead to 4-0.
The Gauchos added three in the sixth to make it a 4-3 game. Lahners started the rally in the seventh with a sharp single to left and Gustafson reached on a hit-by-pitch. Sellers reached on what was supposed to be a sacrifice bunt that the second baseman dropped, loading the bases with no body out. Next batter Molly Bourne made it count as she hit a single to left, scoring Lahners and Gustafson and making it 6-3.
UC Santa Barbara put runners on in the seventh, however the Tigers were able to close out the victory.