Sophmore pitcher Sierra Hyland continued her fine form from last season in the Kajikawa classic this past weekend, striking out 35 batters while giving up just one run in three games. | Mustang News File Photo

Keenan Donath

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The Cal Poly softball team (28-18, 9-6 Big West) wasn’t able to complete the weekend sweep of Big West Conference foe Cal State Fullerton, as the Mustangs dropped the final game of the series 5-3 on Sunday at Bob Janssen Field.

The Titans (27-20-1, 8-7 Big West) capitalized on four Cal Poly errors, scoring four unearned runs in the top half of the second inning, which proved to be enough as an uncharacteristically quiet Mustang offense wasn’t able to challenge Cal State Fullerton at any point after the first inning.

While the sun made for easy watching for spectators, it proved to be an obstacle for Cal Poly’s defense. Misplays on several routine fly balls fueled Cal State Fullerton’s second inning rally.

“It’s our home field and we are used to the sun and the little bit of wind, so (we) should do a better job executing on defense,” head coach Jenny Condon said.

Freshman right-hander Sierra Hyland pitched well considering the conditions, as the she yielded one earned run through seven innings of work. The freshman’s four strikeouts on the day put her at 241 for the season, a mark that is only 12 shy of the Cal Poly single season record set by Desarie (Knipfer) French in 1998.

But Hyland is more concerned with finishing this season strong and vying for a conference title.

“We want to try and win every series and be in a position to play well near the end of the season,” Hyland said.

Cal Poly entered the game tied for second place in the conference standings with UC Santa Barbara, but fell to third with the loss.

Fullerton’s Monique Wesley (4-6) picked up the win while Hyland (22-8) got the loss. Senior catcher Mariah Cochiolo had a base hit and collected two RBIs for Cal Poly.

The Mustangs travel south next Saturday to play Big West Conference leaders Long Beach State in a weekend series.

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