Tempe, Ariz. - San Jose State (1-0) opened its season at the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe, Ariz., with the highest season-opening run total in history – a convincing 12-2 victory over Portland State (0-1) on Thursday.
Said head coach Peter Turner about the win in just five innings, "It was not a good start to the game, but it was a great finish."
Portland State got in front in the first inning when leadoff batter Carly McEachern homered to left center field giving the Vikings their only lead of the game.
The Spartans' offense answered in dominating fashion from the second through fourth innings. Vanessa House led off the second doubling to left center field, advanced to third base on a balk and scored on the second balk of the inning by Portland State pitcher Anna Bertrand.
A single to right field by Nicole Schultz drove in Jessie Hufstetler and Taylor Purdy, who reached base on walks. Jessica Garcia's double to right center field brought in Schultz and Devin Caldwell to bring the second inning's run total to five.
Hufstetler's RBI double down the left field line ignited the Spartans' four-run, third inning. With Hufstetler and Purdy, who was hit by a pitch, on base, Markesha Collins hit one out of the park to provide the Spartans with a 9-2 lead after three innings.
Another three runs in the fourth, highlighted a two-RBI single by Cheryl Freitas, gave San Jose State its first win of 2013.
"Bertrand has been awesome for the past three years," said Turner of the Portland State pitcher who gave up nine runs, was called for four balks, hit two batters and walked three in just three innings of work. "But we moved the ball pretty well. We had a lot of left-handers in the lineup and that worked to our advantage."
Collins, 2-for-3 in the opener, was one of five players with two or more RBI. Jessica Garcia, Hufstetler, Freitas and Schultz each drove in a pair.
"I was proud of the newcomers," said Turner, who watched eight of his nine starters reach base offensively. "We had two freshmen in the infield to start the game and I could not be happier with how they moved the ball."
In the circle for San Jose State, Amanda Pridmore allowed just three hits and two runs with six strikeouts in five innings pitched.
The Spartans' second day of the Kajikawa Classic consists of a 9:30 a.m. (MST) game against CSU Northridge, followed by New Mexico at 12:30 p.m. (MST). "If we keep moving the ball like we did today, I will be pleased. I would not mind being 3-0 by tomorrow."