Fine Pitching Leads to Pair of Shutouts
Feb. 18, 2012 By Jason Clay
By Jason Clay
FRESNO, Calif. - Senior pitchers Mackenzie Oakes and Michelle Moses led the Fresno State softball team to a pair of shutout victories over Santa Clara and Cal State Fullerton on Saturday at Bulldog Diamond.
Oakes (2-0) won game one for the Bulldogs against Santa Clara 7-0 by allowing just two hits and Moses (2-2) backed her performance up with a one-hit, 13-strikeout game in the 2-0 win over Fullerton.
"Anytime you can get back-to-back shutouts, that's really great and I give [Oakes and Moses] a lot of credit for today," said head coach Margie Wright, who saw her team improve to 5-2 on the year.
The three combined hits allowed in the two games are the fewest since Fresno State only gave up two hits in consecutive outings against Santa Clara and Pacific early on in the 2010 season. Former Bulldog Morgan Melloh threw a no-hitter in that Feb. 13 win against Pacific.
Both Oakes and Moses came close to throwing no-hitters on Saturday, as each pitcher did not allow a hit until the sixth inning of their game.
"I was just trying to get my placement a little more shaper today than I was last weekend and it helped," said Moses, who recorded her 13th career game with 10 or more strikeouts. Moses also accounted for both runs in the game two victory, as she hit her fourth homer of the year in the fourth inning.
Moses now has struck out 34 batters on the year with two shutouts, giving her 10 in her career. Oakes, who struck out four and walked only one against Santa Clara, now has 16 strikeouts on the season and just three walks.
"I felt like all the pitches were there, starting out early, and then the defense did a great job behind me today," Oakes said. "I felt like there was more confidence out there [as the game went along] and more confidence in the defense with them making great plays all game."
Oakes led Fresno State to the game one victory by posting her ninth career shutout in the 7-0 win.
Offensively, Fresno State jumped out to a comfortable 5-0 lead after two innings. Freshman designated player Taylor Green drove in two runs in the first on a single to left. The `Dogs then tacked on three more in the second, two off of Stesha Brazil's two-out base hit off of Jessica Turner.
Brooke Ortiz was responsible for the final two runs of the game. She brought home Kaitlin Griffin and Kaylan Pollard with her sixth-inning triple to the gap in left-center. It was Ortiz's second triple in just six games this year.
Fresno State finished with seven hits in game one and Ortiz led the way with her 2-for-3 performance.
That was all the run support she would need, as her only blemish on the day came in the sixth inning when leadoff hitter Ashley Carter ended her no-hitter with a double to left-center.
The Bulldogs had seven hits in game two. Both Brazil and Andrea Ortega went 2-for-3 in that game.
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