Wildcat softball shuts out Monterey Bay twice in first conference series

Freshman+Rachel+Bless+in+the+batters+box+waiting+for+a+pitch+to+swing+at.

Chico State Athletics

Freshman Rachel Bless in the batters box waiting for a pitch to swing at.

The Wildcats managed to split series with the Monterey Bay Otters in dominant form — Both offensively and defensively. 

In game one of their doubleheader, senior second baseman Angel Lopez earned a walk with bases loaded, which brought in the first run of the game early in the second inning. 

Once they headed into the sixth inning, Chico State Softball was able to get an insurance run on the board. Senior first baseman Reilani Pelati hit a single up the middle to start off the inning. Freshman infielder Anastacia Alba pinch ran for Pelati. 

Senior Amanda Metzger moved her over to second base and with a wild pitch Alba ran to third base. Senior utility player Nina Revoir brought her in with a hit, making it 2-0.

Senior starting pitcher Brooke Larsen helped maintain their lead by pitching another brilliant game. She had a stellar performance on the mound, striking out seven batters, walking one and allowing four hits.

Their second game of the double header wasn’t the team’s best performance.

Freshman starting pitcher Mari Takeda Bajan went one inning but couldn’t stop Monterey Bay’s momentum. She was swapped in the second inning for freshman Katelyn Oldwin. 

The Otters had everything going their way as they went on a rally being up 0-5. In the fifth inning, Monterey Bay managed to add on another two making it 0-7. This would later be the final score to finish off the day.

“After the first two games against Monterey Bay, we made it a point to focus on our bats and make the adjustment of getting those runners in that get on,” Larsen said. “Once one person got a hit it became contagious for the whole lineup.” 

Coming off the loss, Chico State Softball kept their heads up and won the third game 8-0 in six innings due to the eight-run-rule.

According to Rule 6.14 in the NCAA handbook: Once a team is ahead by eight or more runs after five innings the umpire will put a stop to the game. 

Both starting pitchers started off strong and didn’t allow any runs until the sixth inning. Suddenly, the Wildcat’s offense woke up and kicked off an eight-run rally. Senior utility player Nina Revior had an incredible offensive night. She hit a single and a three-run homerun in the same inning. In addition, Larsen continued to dominate once again with another complete game shutout.

Even after multiple strong performances at the plate, Revoir remained humble as they prepared for the final game of the series.

“After the game I was excited, but we had another game to play so I was still focused,” Revoir said

During their rally Chico State had five hits, three walks and made Monterey Bay  replace two of their pitchers. 

Although they were able to win in six innings earlier, that didn’t faze Monterey Bay. Chico State was up 5-1 but they lost the lead in the fifth by giving up seven runs. 

The Wildcats weren’t able to stop their opponent’s offensive onslaught in the sixth inning, as the Otters continued to extend their lead with another run to finish off the night.

Giving up a lead is something that head coach Angel Shamblin reflected on.

“We have to make plays defensively and attack the strike zone as pitchers. We didn’t do that in the fifth,” Shamblin said.

Despite losing 6-9 in their final game on Saturday, Revoir still managed to move past it all while keeping her head up.

“I’m excited for our team to grow, progress the rest of the year and happy that we started off on a strong note,” Revoir said

Continuing into the next series, Chico State Softball has their home opener against Cal State San Bernardino. They’ll play in two doubleheaders on Feb. 25 and 26. Games one and two will start at noon and 2:30 p.m. The next day they’ll play at 11:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

Johnny Maldonado can be reached at [email protected]