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Maroon softball splits at California

The 21st-ranked Texas A&M softball team fell to No. 7 Washington, 11-4, before shutting out Long Beach State, 8-0, Thursday at the Cathedral City Classic.

Despite a fourth-inning home run by sophomore Meagan May, the Aggies (10-4) fell to the undefeated Huskies (9-0) before earning their fifth shutout of the season against Long Beach State.

Junior Natalie Villarreal led off game one against Washington with a hard triple down the right field line. Senior Rhiannon Kliesing joined her on the bags after drawing a walk with one out. Both runners stole on the next at-bat, giving the Aggies a 1-0 lead when Villarreal took home.

Washington answered in the top of the third with two runs on a single to center by catcher Shawna Wright. The Huskies scored another four runs on two singles and a double in the top of the fourth, all unearned.

Trailing by five in the bottom of the inning, May slugged her first home run of the season, over center. The Washington center fielder got her glove on the ball but crashed through the outfield fence and dropped the catch.

The Huskies again responded in the next half-inning, scoring two runs on a ground-ruled double that bounced hard at the left field fence and landed outside the stadium. Washington ended the inning ahead 8-2.

A&M tried to rally in the bottom of the fifth. Freshman Nicole Morgan hit a leadoff single through the right side. Freshman Kaydee Rayburn entered at first to run for Morgan and was sent to second on a bunt single by junior Kelsea Orsak.

Villarreal drew a walk to load the bases. Kliesing singled and pushed Rayburn home. Orsak joined her when May grounded out to the second baseman.

The Aggies narrowed the gap to 4-6 in the fifth. Washington, however, scored three runs on two doubles in the top of the sixth. A&M was unable to respond in the seventh and the game ended with the Huskies ahead 11-4.

Washington’s Whitney Jones (2-0) earned the win, allowing four hits and two runs while striking out one in 3.2 innings. Aggie redshirt junior Lindsey Sisk (4-2) took the loss, fanning five batters in seven complete innings and allowing six earned runs.

In game two vs. Long Beach State the Aggies jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the third. Orsak led off the inning with a walk, but was caught stealing on the next pitch. With two outs, freshman Cassie Tysarczyk drew a second walk.

Kliesing followed suit and joined Tysarczyk on base. A fourth walk on the inning put May on first and loaded the bases. Senior Kelsey Spittler hit into the bases-loaded play with a single up the middle that scored Tysarczyk and Kliesing.

With Spittler on first and May on third, freshman Amber Garza slammed a triple to right center, picking up two RBI when the base runners scored. The Aggies ended the inning with a 4-0 lead.

A&M was at it again in the top of the fourth. Orsak drew a walk and was pushed to second on a single through the left side by Tysarczyk. Kliesing stepped up and slugged her seventh home run of the season over the left field fence, pushing the Aggies further ahead, 7-0.

May followed with her second home run of the night, again being caught by the center fielder who fell through the center field fence and dropped the ball to give A&M an 8-0 lead at the end of the half-inning.

Long Beach State was unable to stop the momentum and the game ended with an 8-0 shutout for the Aggies. Sophomore Mel Dumezich (6-2) picked up the win from the circle, striking out seven batters and allowing no hits on only three runs. LBSU’s Taylor Petty suffered the loss, allowing four earned runs in 2.2 innings of work.

The Aggies face Ohio State at 12 p.m. CST tomorrow before taking on top-ranked Georgia at 2:30 p.m. Listen to the games live on Sports Radio 1150 AM or follow the action on AggieAthletics.com.

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Posted by on Feb 25 2011. Filed under Sports.

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