Cal Poly opened up their season in San Diego for the SDSU Season Kickoff tournament from Friday, Feb. 11 to Sunday, Feb. 13. The Mustangs took on Boise State, UIC, Middle Tennessee, Stanford and San Diego State, and could not secure a victory in the tournament.
Friday vs. Boise State
The Mustangs (0-5) started the tournament with a double-header against Boise State and the defending Horizon League champion UIC on Friday, Feb. 11.
In the matchup against the Broncos (5-0), the scoring didn’t start until the third inning when Boise rattled off three runs to break the scoreless tie.
After holding the Mustangs scoreless, the Broncos increased their lead to 5-0 in the fifth inning with a home run by right fielder Eliyah Flores. Boise added another run to the board thanks to a an RBI single, which made the score 6-0.
Cal Poly finally answered with a one-run inning in the sixth thanks to a sacrifice fly by redshirt freshman outfielder Jessica Clements that scored senior catcher Lily Amos.
In the top of the seventh inning, Boise answered by scoring two runs of their own to extend the lead to 8-1.
The Mustang bats finally came to life in the bottom of the seventh, as they scored six runs to get within striking distance. However, a lineout ended the comeback effort and gave Cal Poly their first loss of the season, 7-6.
Friday vs UCI
In the second game of the opening day doubleheader, Cal Poly lost in a heartbreaker by a score of 1-0 to UCI (2-3).
Neither team could get anything going offensively, as both pitchers were shutting down the opposing offenses. The Mustangs had sent senior lefthander Krystyna Allman to the mound, who faced off against UCI’s Carlee Jo Clark.
Despite there being no score in the first five innings, Cal Poly seemed to be the better offensive team as they had five hits in the first six innings.
However, it was UCI that broke the tie and scored the only run of the game in the top of the sixth thanks to a two-out, pinch-hit single by Mary Jones that drove in third baseman Maica Ingles.
In the bottom of the sixth, it looked as though the Mustangs might answer with a run to tie things up with two outs, but they stranded their sixth baserunner and the game stayed at 1-0, which gave Cal Poly their second loss in as many games.
Saturday vs Middle Tennessee
In the third game in the Kick Off tournament on Saturday, Feb. 12, Cal Poly lost 4-3 against Middle Tennessee.
It was a back-and-forth game throughout, but it was the Lightning that struck first with a huge push out of the gate, scoring three runs in the top of the first to take an early lead.
After scoreless frames by both sides, Cal Poly put two runs on the board in the third inning. Senior shortstop Maddie Amos drove in both of these runs with an RBI single to left to bring home Clements and with a hit to left field with two outs. Amos’s single drove in Jessica Clements and freshman infielder Malia Mah.This closed the gap to a score of 3-2.
In the fourth inning, Middle Tennessee scored another run of their own to add some insurance and take a 4-2 lead.
Cal Poly responded with a run in the bottom of the fourth thanks to a homerun from redshirt sophomor infielder Juju Sargent, her first collegiate home run. This brought the Mustangs back to within one at 4-3.
However, the Cal Poly offense was shut down in the final three innings of play and the Lightning came out on top, 4-3.
Sunday vs. Stanford
In a new day at the SDSU Season Kickoff, the Mustangs continued their losing streak into the opening game on Sunday, Feb. 13 against Stanford, losing 5-0.
With Allman on the mound, the first three innings were left scoreless for the Cardinal, as she only allowed two hits.
However, the Mustangs found themselves to have the same static offense, as they left Maddie Amos and Lily Amos stranded on their bases at the top of the first.
Stanford broke the scoring drought and began to gain some momentum when they took a two-run lead in the bottom of the fourth.
The Mustangs offense continued to stall and the Cardinal earned an additional two runs to extend their lead to 4-0 in the fifth..
In their last at-bats in the bottom of the sixth, Stanford capped off their scoring with a triple to right-center to grab a 5-0 lead. In the top of the seventh and final inning, Cal Poly was once again held scoreless and the game ended with a final of 5-0.
Sunday vs. San Diego State
In their last attempt to earn a victory in the SDSU Season Kickoff, the Mustangs faced the host Aztecs (4-1) but fell short of victory and lost 5-2.
In the top of the first, Lily Amos opened the scoring for the Mustangs with a two-out single to bring freshman left fielder Clements home to take a 1-0 lead.
Freshman righthander Kate Judy, who was on the mound for Cal Poly, held San Diego State without a run in the first, so the Mustangs went into the second inning with a lead.
However, by the bottom of the second, the Aztecs pushed across their first two runs to flip the script and take the 2-1 advantage.
After back-to-back scoreless innings from both squads, San Diego State added to their lead in the fifth inning with an RBI groundout to push the score to 3-1.
The Mustangs were once again held scoreless in the sixth and, in the bottom of the inning, the Aztecs extended their lead to 5-1 with a two-run homerun.
In their last shot to get some runs across, senior center fielder Noellah Ramos drove in sophomore outfielder Sydney Frankenberger to cut the lead to 5-2 in the top of the seventh. However, that was all Cal Poly could manage as they fell by that score.
The Mustangs will look to grab their first victory of the young season when they take on San Jose State on Friday, Feb. 25 at Spartan Softball Stadium.