RIVERSIDE, Calif. ---
The Cal State Northridge softball team (10-39, 5-12 Big West) lost 10-0 in five innings to UC Riverside in the final game of a three-game set at Amy S. Harrison Field. Samantha Sloniker and Crystal Maas each had two hits for the Matadors, but the Highlanders got two big innings to complete the weekend sweep.
CSUN found itself with chances Sunday afternoon. Maas led off the second with a double and then moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Tanna Bindi. However, she would be left there to end the inning.
In the third, the first two Matadors reached safely. Tiffini Lucero led off the inning with a double and Madeline Sale drew a walk. However, the next batter lined out sharply to center and Lucero was doubled up at second base.
Finally, with two outs in the fifth, CSUN tried to mount a rally to extend the game. A Sloniker single was sandwiched by a walks from Sydney House and Mikayla Thielges. Unfortunately, the next batter grounded into a fielder's choice to end the game.
For its part, UCR scored six runs, all of them earned, in the second inning. Five of those came against CSUN starter Mia Pagano (8-16) and three came on a two-out home run.
Brianna Elder relieved Pagano and got the last out of the second and the first out of the third before being lifted in favor of Alexa Limon. Three subsequent Matador errors allowed three more Highlander runs to cross in the frame.
Casey Suda earned the win by tossing 4.2 innings of four-hit softball with two strikeouts.
The Matadors conclude the 2012 season next weekend with a three-game series against UC Santa Barbara. On Friday, May 11 the teams will play a doubleheader starting at 1:30 p.m. at Matador Diamond. On Saturday, May 12 the teams will play the final game at noon.