SANTA BARBARA, Calif. ---
The Cal State Northridge softball team (21-29, 7-11 Big West) lost 6-5 to UC Santa Barbara Sunday afternoon in the finale of a Big West Conference series at Campus Diamond. The Matadors stormed back from a 5-0 deficit with a five-run fifth inning, but a Gaucho solo blast proved to be the decisive measure as they took the series.
Trailing 5-0 in the top of the fifth, CSUN mounted a fierce rally to tie the game. Jennifer Tyler led off the frame with a single and then moved to third on a double from Mia Pagano. Tyler scored on an error and Pagano and Leann Lopez came around to score on a 2-run single from Korinne Randazzo.
After Randazzo was forced out on a fielder's choice, Crystal Maas blasted a two-out, two-run home run to tie the game. The deep fly was Maas' third of the season.
The lead would be short lived however. UCSB's Lauren Boser, who also had a double and a triple, launched a solo home run in the bottom of the fifth to give the Gauchos the victory.
For Northridge, Randazzo and Tyler each had two hits. Leann Lopez stole her fifth base of the year and Tiffini Lucero added her 10thsac bunt of the season.
UCSB jumped out to an early lead Sunday. The Gauchos scored twice in the first to chase CSUN starter Brianna Elder. They added three more runs off Shelly Tait in the second and third. Alexa Limon (1-1) tossed 3.2 innings of relief with two hits and the one earned run.
Alex Pingree earned the win for UCSB, tossing 5.0 innings with three hits and one strikeout. Shelby Wisdom picked up a save after going 2.0 innings with one hit.
The Matadors return to action next weekend in its final homestand of the 2013 season. CSUN takes on UC Riverside in a doubleheader on May 4 and a single game on May 5 with both days starting at noon.
Before the game on Sunday, the Matadors will honor the six seniors participating in the final home game of their careers: Mikayla Thielges, Lucero, Limon, Tait, Pagano and Randazzo.