February 12, 2011

Northridge Softball Rallies to Earn Split on Second Day of Kajikawa Classic

Feb. 12, 2011

Western Michigan Box Score

California Box Score

TEMPE, Ariz. - The Cal State Northridge softball team (2-2) split its second day at the Kajikawa Classic. In the first game, CSUN rallied for six down to topple Western Michigan, 8-6. In their second game of the day, the Matadors fell 8-0 in five innings to No. 12 California.

The story early on in the CSUN-Western Michigan game was the calling of illegal pitches. CSUN starter Leann Lopez and WMU starter Meredith Whitney were each subjected to numerous illegal pitches that had a direct influence on the outcome of the game.

The Broncos jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first and then added five runs in the top of the second. That tally chased Lopez from the circle and the Matadors, who brought in Ashley Aratow to finish up the second inning.

However, Northridge was undeterred and rallied for seven runs in the bottom half of the frame. Tanna Bindi started the rally by reaching on a two-base error by the Bronco right fielder. Her at-bat was extended by an illegal pitch which negated a pop-out. She would come around to score on an illegal pitch as well.

Madeline Sale then walked and Karla Chaparro also walked. With two outs, Samantha Sloniker and Jaci Carlsen connected on RBI singles to make the lead 6-3. Tracy Allen then reached on a fielder's choice on another at-bat extended by an illegal pitch to load the bases. That set up Kristen Mihm, who cranked her first home run of the season and CSUN's second grand slam of the weekend to give CSUN a 7-6 lead.

The Matadors added their final run in the bottom of the third. With one out, Sale singled up the middle and in the next at-bat, Chaparro was hit by a pitch. That brought up Mosier who laced a single up the middle to give CSUN a two-run lead.

The pitchers carried the load the rest of the way for the Matadors. Aratow earned the first win of her collegiate career, tossing 2.2 innings and allowing three hits and one earned run.

"I think I still have a lot to learn, but the girls make it easy to back me up," Aratow said. "I think having Mikayla as my catcher gave me confidence. That and a great infield backing me up allowed us to rally for the win."

Carly Wade also gave CSUN and head coach Tairia Flowers a strong outing. She went two innings, giving up only one hit and striking out one.

Hannah Fraijo then closed out the seventh for Northridge to earn her first save of the season and third of her career. That ties her with several other Matadors for the 10th most in school history.

In the second game of the day, Northridge faced its second ranked opponent in as many days. Although the Matadors managed four hits against the Golden Bears, they ultimately dropped an 8-0 decision.

Cal jumped on Wade right out of the gate, roughing up the freshman for three hits and seven earned runs in just over an inning of work. Fraijo closed out the final two-plus innings for CSUN, scattering four hits with one earned run and two walks.

On offense, four different Matadors had a hit. Tracy Allen had a double, Jaci Carlsen had a single and a stolen base and Tanna Bindi collected the first hit of her collegiate career. Jennifer Mosier had the other hit for the Matadors.

Wade took the loss for CSUN, her first of the season. Jolene Henderson went four innings with two strikeouts to earn the win for the 12th-ranked Golden Bears.

CSUN closes out its time at the Kajikawa Classic Sunday morning with a game against Portland State. The game between the Matadors and Vikings will start at 10:30 a.m. (MT) / 9:30 a.m. (PT) and will be played at South Mountain Community College. The game was moved due to travel issues for both teams.

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