Matadors Rebound to Split Saturday Doubleheader with Gauchos

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. ---

The Cal State Northridge softball team (21-28, 7-10 Big West) lost 8-0 in five innings and won 3-0 in a Big West Conference doubleheader with UC Santa Barbara Saturday at Campus Diamond. After suffering a tough loss game one, senior Alexa Limon and Jennifer Tyler teamed up to give the Matadors seven shutout innings in the game two victory.

Game One Recap

After scoring a run in the first inning, the Gauchos broke the game open with a seven-run third en route to an 8-0, five-inning victory.

CSUN had its chances in the first inning. Korinne Randazzo started the game with a single and then moved to second on a sac bunt from Tiffini Lucero. Randazzo then stole third and a hit batter put runners on the corners with one out.

However, a suicide squ eeze attempt was missed and Randazzo was caught stealing from third base to end the rally.

UCSB seized on the momentum and scored a run in the bottom of the first. The Gauchos then roughed up CSUN starter Shelly Tait (10-11) in the third, chasing her from the circle. She allowed nine hits and eight earned runs with two strikeouts in 2.1 innings of work.

Limon tossed the final 1.2 innings for the Matadors, finishing with three strikeouts and a walk. Shelby Wisdom earned the win for UCSB with six strikeouts.

Game Two Recap

The Matadors rebounded quickly, scoring a run in the bottom of the first, to back up their pitchers as they won 3-0.

Limon started the second game and was very effective. She allowed just four hits in 4.1 innings with one strikeout and two walks to earn her first career victory as a Matador.

"I was just trying to hit my spots and keep them off balance," Limon said. "Our defense made some great plays which helped. In game two, I wanted go out there and make a statement that we were there to compete."

Tyler, making her first appearance in the circle since Mar. 3, tossed 2.2 innings of relief with one hit and one strikeout. The save was the first of her Matador career.

"I was really focusing on getting strikes and going after the batters. I knew our defense would be strong behind me," Tyler said. "I wanted to pick up where Alexa left off. She was doing very well, using her off speed pitches and location to keep them off balance."

At the plate, Mikayla Thielges went a perfect 3-for-3 with an RBI and a sac bunt. Tanna Bindi had two RBIs and collected her second triple of the season. Korinne Randazzo scored two runs.

In the top of the first, Randazzo reached on an error, moved to second on a sac bunt and then advanced to third on a single. Bindi brought her home with a sac fly to left to give Northridge the early 1-0 advantage.

Northridge added two runs in the top of the fifth to end the game's scoring. Randazzo singled to start the inning, moved to second on a sac bunt and then scored on an RBI single by Thielges.

Abby Linn pinch ran for Thielges and came all the way around to score on Bindi's RBI triple to center.

"I thought we did a good job of moving on and refocusing after the first game," CSUN head coach Tairia Flowers said. "We made adjustments a lot quicker and were able to score in the first inning. The girls know we did not show our best in game one, but to come back after a run rule, play well and post a shutout shows how tough this team can be."

"Our pitchers did a good job in game two. They mixed speeds and hit spots. Our defense made plays behind them and both looked very comfortable," Flowers added.

Shelby Wisdom took the loss for UCSB, allowing two earned runs and five hits in 4.1 innings of work.

The Matadors and Gauchos will meet Sunday in the third and final game of the series. First pitch is slated for noon from Campus Diamond.

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