California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

California Lutheran University's Student Newspaper Since 1961

The Echo

    Softball finishes home season with huge upset

    The day couldn’t get any sweeter for the Regals softball team.

    The Regals played a double-header series this past Friday against nationally ranked No. 22 Chapman Panthers. The series marked the last home game of the year for the Regals and the last time the seniors played at Hutton Field.

    “It was nice for them to come in here and us feel confident and know we had nothing to lose. We played two good games today.

    So it was awesome, and I couldn’t have asked for a better way to be sent out as a senior,” said catcher Shannon Tinsley.

    In the first game, CLU used great relief pitching and timely hitting to win.

    The Regals struck early and  scored a run in the first inning off a RBI double. The Panthers struck right back in the next inning and scored five quick runs.

    Freshman Blake Lewis came in to relief pitch the following inning and shut it down for the Regals. She went five innings and only gave up one hit.

    “I just went in there, kept calm, and kept it simple. I just wanted to go out there and help my team,” said Lewis.

    “Blake came in and did a really good job of keeping the ball down. Our pitchers should be throwing the ball down around the knees to be successful,” said head coach Debby Day.

    CLU took the lead again late in the game, scoring four runs in the fourth and then the go ahead run in the sixth inning.

    The Panthers tried to rally a comeback in the seventh but came up short. Regals junior center fielder Kayla Sakamoto made a game- saving diving catch in center field that left the tying run stranded on second base. The Regals won 6-5.

    “My team always has my back on defense, and I can always count on them to pick up runs to help us win,” said Lewis.

    The second game was even better for the Regals as they scored five runs in the fifth to take control of the game and win 6-1.

    Sophomore pitcher Shonna Christianson went seven innings, giving only six hits and allowing zero earned runs.

    “We knew Chapman was a really good team. We played them in our second series this year. They were much better and much more ready at that point than we were. It was a combination of they were a good team then and we were not a good team back then,” said Day.

    Day has seen a huge improvement between the players’ performances during the start of the season to now.

    “The team you saw play today was relaxed, focused, had good pitching and timely hitting. We are playing how we can play, how we know how to play and as a coach there is nothing more rewarding than that,” she said.

    The Regals seized the day and sent the seniors off in a winning fashion.

    “This team has really come together and we are like a family,” said senior Debben Hoffer. “There is no better way to go out like with our last two wins against Chapman.”

    The Regals concluded the regular season with a split at Whittier College on Saturday. CLU finished sixth in the conference with a 17-21, 12-16 SCIAC record.

    They finished their season strong, winning 13 of their final 17 games. Cal Lu hopes to build off this and have a successful 2014 campaign.

     

    Matthew Bowman
    Staff Writer
    Published April 24, 2013

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