Feb. 8, 2013
By Theresa Kurtz
By Theresa Kurtz
FRESNO, Calif.-- Fresno State softball opened the 2013 season with a pair of wins propelled by a big offensive inning in each game. The Bulldogs defeated UTEP 10-2 in five innings and then UC Riverside 7-3 in the night cap at Bulldog Diamond.
Head coach Trisha Ford said the `Dogs would be aggressive offensively and they delivered outscoring their opponents 17-5 on opening night. Ford begins her career as a Bulldog with a 2-0 record.
"It was a great opening night," Ford said. "The team did a good job of coming out and executing the things that we needed to do. We had some big hits and pitched well. The end result was what we were looking for."
Junior Brooke Ortiz got the `Dogs offense going after recording the first hit of the season, a single to the short stop. Freshman Whitney Smith earned a walk in her first at-bat to load the bases for 2012 all-conference selection Vonnie Martin. The junior wasted no time picking up where she left off in 2012 and hit a grand slam to give the Bulldogs a 4-0 lead in the top of the first.
"It was a great first inning," said Ford. "We worked some counts and executed our base running, which allowed Vonnie to get up to bat. She put a good swing on a good pitch and got a great result."
The Bulldogs quickly loaded the bases with sophomore Brenna Moss coming to bat. The center fielder cleared the bases with a triple down the right field line extending the `Dogs lead to 7-0. Moss had two base clearing triples a year ago.
Ortiz brought home another run with a single, her second of the game, as the Bulldogs led 8-0 heading into the second inning.
Jillian Compton struck out the first batter she faced in her collegiate debut. The freshman retired the first six batters she faced in order. She struck out two in two innings of work in the first game. Compton started the second night of the game and recorded her first complete game. She struck out five batters and allowed two earned runs against UC Riverside.
The Bulldogs added on three more runs increasing their lead over the Miners 10-0.
UTEP scored a run in the top of the fourth inning and in the top of the fifth inning, but sophomore Destinee' Levesque struck out the final batter as the `Dogs won 10-2. She record two strikeouts in one inning of work.
Freshman Taylor Langdon earned after taking over in the circle. She also record two strikeouts on the night.
In the second game of the night, the Bulldogs trailed UC Riverside 1-0 after the Highlanders scored first in the third inning.
UC Riverside had a no-hitter going until the bottom of the third inning when Moss broke it up with a single to center field.
The Bulldogs took the lead 2-1 in the fourth inning after two `Dogs crossed home plate on a Highlander error. A wild pitch brought in another Bulldog run increasing their lead to 3-1.
Moss drove in two more runs in the fourth inning with a single to right field. She combined for four runs on the night and hit .500 (4-for-8). A single up the middle from Ortiz allowed another run to score, the sixth run of the inning, as the `Dogs led UCR 6-1.
In the fifth inning, the Highlanders answered with two runs narrowing the Bulldogs lead to 6-3.
The Bulldogs added an insurance run late in the game to win 7-3. Compton earned the win and is now 1-0 on the season with a 2.0 ERA.
Freshman Paige Gumz also ended the night hitting .500 with a pair of hits and a RBI.
The Bulldogs continue action in the Fresno State Kick-Off Tournament at 1:30 p.m. against Southern Miss and at 6 p.m. face UC Davis.
"Discover Fresno State Athletics!" -- Bulldog softball opens the season with the Fresno State Kickoff Tournament Feb. 8-10 at Bulldog Diamond. Catch all the action on ESPN2 790, home Bulldog softball. Stay connected with the Bulldogs on Facebook (fresnostateathletics) and Twitter (@FSAthletics).
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