NORTHRIDGE, Calif. ---
The Cal State Northridge softball team (2-6) defeated CSU Bakersfield 2-1 Friday afternoon in the first game for both teams at the Stanford Nike Invitational in Palo Alto, Calif. Junior Leann Lopez delivered the game-winning RBI in the bottom of the sixth and the Matador defense cut down the tying the run at the plate to end the game.
CSUN jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. With one out, Abby Linn reached on an error and stole second. Mikayla Thielges delivered her fourth double of the season, but Linn had stop at third on the play
A fielder's choice retired Linn at the plate, but Crystal Maas delivered a two-out single to left field to plate Thielges.
That run helped lift Northridge starter Mia Pagano (1-2) to persevere through jams in the second and fourth inning. However, the Roadrunners finally broke through in the sixth inning to tie the contest.
In their half of the sixth, the Matadors rallied quickly to produce the winning run. Maas singled, moved to second on a wild pitch and then advanced to third on a sac bunt by Maylynn Mitchell. Lopez then delivered an RBI single to give the Matadors the victory.
CSUB did not go quietly. Senior Shelly Tait came in for Northridge and picked up the save thanks in part to her defense.
The lead off batter was hit by a pitch and then stole second. She stayed there after the Roadrunners popped up a bunt, but the next batter was also hit by a pitch to put two on the bases.
Tait struck the next batter out looking and with two outs, CSUB pushed a single through the right side. Maas gunned her down at the plate to end the game.
Pagano tossed six innings with four hits and one run allowed. She also had three strikeouts.
Game Two Recap
In their second game of the day, the Matadors (2-7) lost 9-0 in five innings to No. 20 Stanford. The host Cardinal scored three runs in the first, four in the third and two in the fourth to pull away for the mercy rule victory.
At the plate, Crystal Maas and Ariana Wassmer helped the Matadors avert a no-hitter or perfect game by delivering singles in the top of the fifth inning.
Northridge returns to Smith Family Field on Saturday, Feb. 16 with games against No. 20 Stanford and Santa Clara. The Matadors close out their time in Palo Alto with a game Sunday against CSU Bakersfield.