News: A Daily Double For Softball: First Conference Win Is First Home Win
After struggling to find some rhythm at the plate this year, sophomores Sara Quintero and Audrey Serna came up clutch for the Pasadena City College softball team on Thursday. The pair rallied the Lancers by knocking in two runs to defeat El Camino College-Compton Center, 7-6, for PCC's first South Coast Conference win of the season. The triumph was also the Lancers' first at Robinson Park in seven attempts this year.
With PCC down 6-5 in the bottom of the fifth inning, Compton reliever Martha Quijaro walked freshman pitcher Breanna Rodrigo. Sophomore catcher Allison Lacey then attempted a sacrifice bunt to move Rodrigo to second but Quijaro overthrew the ball to first base, advancing the runners to second and third on the error.
Serna’s infield single in the shortstop hole scored Rodrigo to tie it. Quintero, a first baseman, followed with a perfectly placed grounder to second base to drive in Lacey for what proved to be the game-winning RBI.
Quintero went 1-for-2 with two RBI, her first coming in the fourth inning when she singled to center, bringing in freshman second baseman Justine Zavala. Serna, the team's batting champion last year with a .408 average and an All-SCC selection, has fought through a shoulder injury and an early season batting slump. Normally an infielder, Serna started in right field for the first time.
Zavala, Lacey and sophomore center fielder Vanessa Contreras each made big contributions. Zavala and Contreras both batted a perfect 3-for-3 while Lacey went 2-for-4 and scored two runs. It was Lacey’s lone RBI that jump-started Pasadena’s bats when she tripled to right center in the first inning to bring in sophomore shortstop Maddy Gianoli for the first run of the game.
In all, the Lancers (6-12, 1-6 in the SCC) collected 10 hits. Compton (11-4, 3-4) knocked out 13 hits and threatened to regain the lead in the sixth.
With two outs, Rodrigo began to show fatigue as she walked Emily Cancino and then gave up two consecutive hits to Jessica Arias and Mallory Wheeler. With the bases loaded, Pasadena head coach Monica Tantlinger decided to bring in sophomore pitcher Casey Ramirez for some relief work and it paid off.
Tartars centerfielder Viviana Rivera, who had three hits in her previous three trips to to the box, promptly popped out to shortstop, ending the threat. Ramirez earned the save as she stranded the potential tying runner on first in the seventh to finish the victory.
Compton's Arielle Palafox had slugged a 2-run home run in the top of the fifth inning that gave the Tartars a short-lived lead at 6-5.
The Lancers look to take this momentum into this weekend’s Golden West Tournament which is set to take place in Huntington Beach beginning on Friday. Pasadena was the tournament champion in 2009.
"It was as important to win at Robinson Park as it was to gain a conference win," said Tantlinger, who is in her first season directing the Lancers. "We really haven't hit well on our own diamond until this game. Compton beat us the first time around at its place so it was nice to see us bounce back here. Despite losing v. East LA (1-0 in 10 innings on Tuesday), that game was huge for our confidence. We know we have the ability to beat some of these teams. It's just a matter now of executing, which the offense did today."
Release written by Sara Medina, sports information assistant
[Photo--A home tradition may have started as the Lancers did a team "victory slide" near home plate following a 7-6 win over Compton Thursday at Robinson Park, image by Richard Quinton, sports information photographer.]
Release Date: 03/07/2014