News: Ficocelli's Blast Not Enough In 7-6 Softball Loss
Sophomore Natalie Ficocelli, the only returning sophomore from head coach Brittany Williams' first season in 2012, did her best to lead the Pasadena City College softball team Tuesday in its South Coast Conference game at East Los Angeles College.
Hitting as the designated player, Ficocelli (pictured, from Providence High, Burbank) drove a 2-run homer over the right field fence to rally the Lancers from a 3-0 deficit to a 4-3 lead in the fourth inning. The left-handed hitter added a double that produced another run as PCC took a 6-3 lead into the bottom of the seventh.
However, in a deja vu moment that mirrored the first visit to ELAC in the 2013 conference opener, the Lancers couldn't hang on. The Huskies mounted a rally, helped by two PCC errors, and capped it on a 2-RBI, walk-off single to right center by catcher Valerie Aguilar for a 7-6 win. Just as it had in the opener on Feb. 12, East LA stole the game from the Lancers with PCC leading 6-5 and the Huskies down to their final out.
Lancers' starter Cierra Newton, who went 2-for-3, including a 2-run double to right center in the fourth, stranded 14 ELAC runners in a performance where she allowed 16 hits, but only three earned runs. In the fourth, she got out of a bases-loaded jam when second baseman Audrey Serna made a circus catch in short right field on a pop fly. In the sixth, she left ELAC without a run despite runners on second and third by striking out Evangelina Montes.
PCC (13-19 overall, 5-10 in conference) hit the ball hard throughout the defeat, including a double by catcher Jazmin Hernandez that became a run in the sixth on a RBI single by centerfielder Monica Enriquez. Hernandez was robbed of a hit in the fourth on a diving stop off a liner in the hole by ELAC shortstop Natalie Gutierrez. The Lancers finished with 10 hits, four for extra bases.
Aguilar was 4-for-4 with three RBI and Huskies' third baseman Jazzmin Espinosa 3-for-4 with three RBI. ELAC (10-19 overall, 7-8 in SCC play) held a ceremony to honor its 1971 team that finished as Southern California runner-up prior to the contest.
The Lancers will look for a season sweep of last-place El Camino College-Compton Center on Thursday, April 4 in a 2 p.m. first pitch at Robinson Park. PCC already has posted 12-2 and 12-1 wins over the Tartars.
Release Date: 04/03/2013