The Cal Poly Softball team collected one win and four losses in the ShareSLO Mustang Classic tournament on Mar. 8-10 at Bob Janssen Field. The Mustangs’ (4-18) one win was an 8-6 walk-off win against Utah State. Utah State (8-11) and Iowa State (13-9) were the two teams who participated in the tournament hosted by Cal Poly.
Friday – Game 1
Cal Poly fell in their first game of the tournament after a 4-2 loss to Iowa State. The Cyclones opened the game scoring with one run in the first inning behind an RBI single by third baseman Mikayla Ramos.
The Cyclones extended their lead to 3-0 in the top of the fourth inning. Iowa State’s Tayln Lewis was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded which automatically allowed Kaylee Bosworth to score from third. After the run scored, sophomore right-handed pitcher Dakota Casper came in relief for freshman starting pitcher Krystyna Allman. Directly after, the Cyclones’ Sally Woolpert scored Kirsten Caudle with a sacrifice fly to make the score 3-0 after the top of the fourth inning.
The Cyclones responded in the top of the fifth inning after Kaylee Bosworth tripled to center field which scored Taylor Nearad.
Again, the Mustangs were able to cut the lead when Ramos hit an RBI single to score sophomore left fielder Sydney James. Both teams were held scoreless in both the sixth and seventh innings. Cyclone starting pitcher Emma Hylen pitched a complete game, only allowing four hits. Ramos had three of Cal Poly’s four hits in the 4-2 loss to Iowa State.
Friday – Game 2
Cal Poly also fell in game two of Friday’s doubleheader, with a 4-0 loss to Utah State.
Junior starting pitcher Steffi Best held the Aggies scoreless with the bases loaded after striking out the Aggies’ first baseman Bailee Trapp in the first inning.
The Aggies got their first run in the top of the third inning thanks to a sacrifice fly by third baseman Erin Kuba, which scored shortstop Lexi Orozco.
The Aggies extended their lead to 4-0 after scoring three runs in the top of the fourth inning. Center fielder Stephanie Reed was able to reach first base thanks to a Mustang error which also scored Mia Maher.
“Defensively, we have got to be able to take care of the ball and shut down innings,” head coach Jenny Condon said.
After Orozco flew out for the second out, Kennedy Hira hit a two-RBI double.
The score remained 4-0 for the rest of the game. Utah State starting pitcher Kapri Toone threw a complete game and held the Mustangs to only two hits.
Saturday – Game 1
The Mustangs only win of the weekend came against Utah State thanks to a four-run seventh inning.
This game started ugly for Cal Poly as the Aggies scored five runs in the top of the first inning. The Aggies’ shortstop Ryan Holmes started the scoring with an RBI single. Then, first baseman Bailee Trapp hit a two-RBI double. Lastly, second baseman Kenzie Bolin capped off the scoring by hitting one of her two home runs of the game.
The Mustangs starting pitcher Dakota Casper was replaced by Allman directly after the home run.
“Our pitchers need to be more consistent and make better pitches,” Condon said.
The Aggies extended their lead to 6-0 after a Kenzie Bolin RBI single in the top of the third inning.
The Mustangs were held scoreless until the fourth inning when senior catcher Makenna Young hit a solo home run to cut into the lead. This would be Young’s first of two home runs in the game.
The Mustangs cut into the lead even further after a three-run fifth inning. Ramos opened the scoring with a two-RBI double which cut the lead to 6-3. Young followed with a double of her own, which scored Ramos, to cut the lead to 6-4 at the end of the fifth inning.
The Aggies were held scoreless in the sixth and seventh innings, which gave the Mustangs the opportunity to come back in the bottom of the seventh.
After a Ramos single to start the seventh inning, Young hit her second home run of the day to tie the game at 6-6. Freshman designated player Kianah Corey was the hero of the day as she hit a two-run home run to win the game for the Mustangs.
“It was one of the coolest games we have ever had, especially with [Corey] coming up and hitting the walk-off,” sophomore third baseman Noa Yakir said.
“We have never given up, quit and we just keep battling,” Condon said. “We finally got the payoff.”
Saturday – Game 2
The Mustangs followed up their walk-off win with a 6-3 loss to the Iowa State Cyclones in game two of the doubleheader.
Cal Poly opened the scoring thanks to a solo home run by junior first baseman Hailey Martin in the bottom of the second inning.
The Cyclones answered with a three-run third inning. The Cyclones scored all three of their runs thanks to a triple-RBI double by first baseman Sally Woolpert.
However, the Mustangs tied the game at three in the bottom of the fourth inning. Martin hit an RBI double to cut the lead to 3-2. Freshman catcher Lily Amos was able to tie the game with an RBI ground out.
“We had great at-bats,” Condon said. “Even a lot of our outs were hard outs, so we had quality at-bats.”
Again the Cyclones answered with a run scored in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings to close out the game at 6-3.
Cal Poly closed out the Mustang Classic with an 8-2 loss to the Iowa State Cyclones.
Cal Poly was able to score one run in the first inning after Martin’s ground out RBI.
In the top of the second inning, Iowa State third baseman Logan Schaben hit a three-run home run. This was Schaben’s one of two home runs in the game. The Cyclones scored one run in the third inning thanks to an RBI single by Kaylee Bosworth to extend the lead to 4-2.
Yakir scored Cal Poly’s last run of the game when she hit an RBI double to cut the lead to 4-2.
The Cyclones took a commanding lead after solo home runs by Schaben and center fielder Taylor Nearad in the fourth and sixth innings to extend the lead to 6-2. Schaben finished 2 for 3 on the day with 4 RBI’s. While Nearad finished 3 for 4 with one RBI.
The Cyclones capped off the game with an 8-2 win behind a 12 hit performance. Cyclones pitcher Emma Hylen held the Mustangs to only one hit in the three innings she pitched.
“Our mental state is that we are doing very good and we all know that it is only going up from here,” Yakir said. “We are only going to get better.”
“I think we are overall frustrated at times,” Condon said. “I think we are doing some things well, but we have not figured out how to string everything together- the pitching, defense and hitting.”
Cal Poly will travel to the CSUN/LMU tournament from March 15-17 to play a total of five games over the weekend. The Mustangs open the tournament against Loyola Marymount on Friday, Mar. 15 at 8 a.m.