Feb. 7, 2014
Tempe, Ariz. – Eleven is the San Jose State University softball team’s new lucky number, after the Spartans’ bested CSU Northridge and Seattle by 11-4 and 11-7 margins on February 7 at the Kajikawa Classic, hosted by Arizona State.
The Spartans’ 11-2, 11-4 and 11-7 wins over Creighton (2/6), CSU Northridge and Seattle (2/7), respectively, marked the first time since 1994 that San Jose State scored 10+ runs in three-straight games (10-4, 11-1 and 11-1 wins over Oregon State, UT Arlington and Colorado State).
"During the offseason, I kept wondering if our hitting was that good or our pitching was that bad," said Head Coach Peter Turner. "But our hitting is that good. Though this is a young team, they are incredibly disciplined at the plate and have an aggressive approach. When they're at the plate and see something in the red zone, they crush it."
In the first game, against CSU Northridge, a nine-run third inning cemented the Spartans’ 11-4 win.
San Jose State (3-0) trailed the Matadors (0-1), 4-2, after two innings. But akin to the Spartans’ 11-2 victory over Creighton on February 6, the Spartans opened the scoring floodgates in the third inning.
After Alyssa Martinez scored on a Jessie Meyer sacrifice fly, an error by CSU Northridge’s second baseman allowed Casey Watt and Jessie Hufstetler to score. An RBI-single by Kryn Masutani scored Marissa Toy, and Martinez knocked her second two-RBI single in as many games for the 6-2 lead. Jessie Hufstetler’s two-out three-run homer capped off the inning for the game’s final 11-2 score.
In five innings of relief, Allison Lang (1-0) did not allow any hits and struck out four batters. Said Turner of the junior, "She did a superb job, and it's what I've come to expect from her because she is an elder statesman on the pitching staff. She had an outstanding day, came in and did what we asked, which was to throw up a ton of zeros."
Against Seattle (1-1), the Spartans held a 6-1 lead going into the sixth inning. But a series of singles by the Redhawks led to a six-run inning and San Jose State faced the seventh with a one-run deficit.
But San Jose State managed to get itself out of the jam during its next at-bat. After Nicole Schultz’s run tied the score, 7-7, Jessica Garcia drove in two with a hard-hit single to center field for the 9-7 score. A sacrifice fly by Jessie Meyer plated Hufstetler and Garcia got the Spartans’ 11th run on a passed ball for the final 11-7 score.
"Today was the day of the Jessie's," Turner said. "Garcia, Hufstetler and Meyer all came up with big hits at big times and drove in runs."
The Spartans play another doubleheader at the Kajikawa Classic on February 8, which begins at 11:30 a.m. (MT) against Cal Poly and Indiana.