Dogs Power Past UMass, 7-5
Feb. 27, 2011
CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. - Senior catcher Caitlin Stiglich slugged her fourth career grand slam to spark Fresno State's 7-5 win over Massachusetts.
UMass opened the scoring with a run in the second for an early 1-0 lead before Fresno State pulled away.
In the fourth inning, Haley Gilleland drew a four-pitch walk and then Brooke Ortiz slapped the Bulldogs' first hit of the day to the shortstop for an infield single while moving Gilleland to second. The speedy duo of Gilleland and Ortiz teamed up for a double steal two pitches later to get a pair of Dogs into scoring position.
After Michelle Moses struck out swinging for the frame's first out, Courtney Moore pulled off one of the rarer feats in softball when she dropped down a perfectly executed one-out suicide squeeze for a single. The gutsy call plated Gilleland from third to even the game at 1-1 before UMass' Sara Plourde beaned Demi Walker with the bases loaded for Fresno State's first advantage of the game at 2-1.
The Bulldogs broke open the game on Stiglich's fifth-inning grand slam which extended their lead to 6-1 and set the stage for the 7-5 victory, marking the sixth win of the season for Fresno State.
Junior pitcher Mackenzie Oakes improved to 4-0 in the circle this year.
The Bulldogs' game against Oregon State was postponed to a yet to be determined later date because the length of the games on Yankee Field pushed back the start time and the Beavers did not want to risk missing their flight later this afternoon.
Fresno State will return to action on Friday in the Campbell/Cartier Classic in San Diego when the Bulldogs face No. 25 BYU at 9 a.m. and tournament host San Diego State at 6 p.m. In the three-day affair, the Dogs will also compete against No. 23 Houston, Long Beach State and Baylor at SDSU's Softball Stadium.
Through the Bulldogs first seven games of the season, Fresno State is 6-1 with wins over a pair of teams ranked in the Top 25. The Bulldogs have defeated then-No. 8 Missouri 6-3 and No. 19 Oklahoma State 4-3.
"We Are Your Team!" --- Fresno State takes to the road for the next month and returns to Bulldog Diamond on March 10 when the Dogs host the 2011 Bayer CropScience Classic. Fans can purchase season tickets for as low as $39 (youth) or $65 (adult general admission) by logging on to www.gobulldogs.com, calling 559-278-DOGS or by visiting the Bulldog Ticket Office.