RIVERSIDE, Calif. – Santa Clara softball was swept by UC Riverside in a doubleheader Saturday afternoon by scores of 4-2 and 8-2.
Both pitching staffs were able to hold the other team to runs in just one inning, but the Highlanders' (16-12) four-run fifth was the difference.
A walk and a single to center ended the day for Broncos (7-17) starter Lauren Anderson after 4 2/3 innings. Lauren Schiek entered and promptly put the tying runs in scoring position with a wild pitch. Brittney Garcia took advantage with a game-tying single and Melanie Olmos followed with a two-run shot to left center to make it 4-2.
Jacy Boles (9-2) benefited, picking up the complete game victory. She allowed two runs on three hits with two walks and four strikeouts.
Santa Clara scored both of its runs in the top of the fourth. With runners on the corners and one down, Emma Bickford doubled to center to give the Broncos a 2-0 lead.
Sarah Ellersick and Alexandria Hale scored the two Santa Clara runs with Sammy Needham and Hannah Russell adding base hits.
Schiek (0-1) ended up with the loss in 1 1/3 innings.
Emma Ramelot led off the bottom of the first with a home run and some sloppy Santa Clara defense followed to give UC Riverside a 3-0 lead after one that would hold up.
The Highlanders added three more in the third and two in the fourth to add a cushion.
Amanda Lynch and Haylee Kela both added two RBIs for Riverside with Ramelot and Danielle Ortega scoring two runs apiece.
Megan Casper (4-2) went the distance to get the win. She allowed two runs on six hits with two walks and seven strikeouts.
After having the first nine retired in order, Santa Clara got its first two on in the fourth via a single by Regan Dias and a walk to Eleni Spirakis that led to a two-run rally. An infield single by Russell with one down brought home the first run and two batters later Kelsie Barnard's RBI double made it a 6-2 game.
Dias (5-5) started and took the loss in 3 innings. She allowed six runs, four earned, on seven hits with a walk and two strikeouts.
The two teams conclude their series tomorrow at 1 p.m.
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