April 20, 2013
BOISE, Idaho - Boise State freshman Sarah Barneshit a walk-off, three-run home run to push the Broncos past San Diego State 5-3 Saturday, in the first game of a doubleheader. Another late rally by Boise State forced extra innings in game two, but the Aztecs used three home runs to win the nightcap 3-2, and tie the Mountain West series at one game apiece.
Barnes homered twice in the first game as part of a three-hit outing and her seventh-inning shot to center was the second walk-off home run while trailing in school history. Holly Bourkewas also 3-for-4 in the game for Boise State (18-23-1, 2-6 MW).
Lorena Bauer homered twice in game two for San Diego State and Patrice Jackson went deep in the eighth inning to provide the Aztecs (28-15, 6-2 MW) all the offense they needed. The Broncos outhit the visitors 10-6 in the second game.
Barnes Lifts Broncos to Thrilling Win>
Barnes homered in each the sixth and seventh innings of the first game to help Boise State win its conference home opener in walk-off fashion. The freshman drove in four runs in the final two innings including a three-run shot with two outs in the bottom of the seventh to give the Broncos a 5-3 win.
San Diego State started the scoring in the top of the first inning. An error allowed the first batter of the game to reach and a two-out double from Bauer pushed the run home.
Bourke and Devon Bridges teamed up to both deliver base hits in the first and third innings. After being stranded in the first, Bourke came around to tie the game in the third on a two-out single from Makenna Weir.
The Aztecs took the lead right back with back-to-back doubles to start the fourth. Bronco starter Rebecca Pattonreturned to form and retired the next three batters to get out of the inning.
Patton kept the Broncos within a run after stranding a runner at third in the top of the fifth. It looked like she would escape trouble in the sixth as well. Bauer led off the inning with her third hit of the game and was at third with one out. She tried to score on a ground ball to Bronco shortstop Mackenzie Whyte, but Whyte cut down the run at the plate for the second out.
With runners on first and second Barnes dropped a fly ball in left and allowed a run to score. Patton's second strikeout of the game ended the inning and Boise State trailed by two.
Barnes immediately atoned for her error in the bottom of the sixth. On the first pitch of the inning she lined a home run over the fence in left to draw Boise State within one.
Patton took care of the Aztecs in order in the seventh to keep hope alive. Bourke reached on an error to start the home half of the frame and that was it for San Diego State starter Rebecca Arbino. Reliever Danielle O'Toole entered and struck out two batters around a single from Whyte. With two out and two on, Barnes was back at the plate. Again the freshman was first-pitch swinging and this time a fly ball to center sailed over the fence for the game winner.
Patton improved to 10-9 with the complete-game win. Just one of the three runs allowed was earned as she surrendered seven hits and no walks while striking out three.
Broncos Tally Plenty of Hits, Aztecs Make Theirs Count in Second Game
Boise State capitalized on its first scoring opportunity to stake an early lead in the second game. Ashley Palmer doubled to lead off the third, which was the first hit for either team. With two outs and Palmer at third, Tara Gloversingled to left and put the Broncos on top.
Kenzie Colewas working on a no-hitter into the fourth inning, but Bauer came to the plate with two away and with one swing of the bat tied the game with the Aztecs' first hit, sending a home run to center. Cole allowed two more base runners in the frame but escaped with the score still knotted at 1-1.
That's what remained on the board after the Broncos squandered golden opportunities in the fourth and fifth innings. Bridges singled to lead off the fourth and reached second on a sacrifice bunt, but was thrown out at third trying to advance on a ground ball. The Broncos ended up leaving two on in the inning.
In the fifth, three hits loaded the bases with one out for the three and four spots in the order. Bridges fouled out and Whyte grounded out to leave the tying run 60 feet away.
San Diego State was not putting together anything offensively until the sixth when Bauer again homered with two outs and gave the Aztecs a 2-1 lead. Cole kept from coming unraveled after the homer and left the bases loaded.
Boise State was still down a run in the seventh. Jordan Kreigerstarted things off with an infield single and took second on a wild pitch. The next two batters were retired and Bridges was intentionally walked to put the winning run on base and get to Whyte.
The junior shortstop delivered big time. After falling behind 0-2, she poked a 1-2 pitch back up the middle and into right center. Kreiger flew around from second to score the tying run and the winning run was at third. The Broncos could not secure the win in regulation, but had forced extras.
Cole got behind Jackson 2-0 to start the eighth and allowed the third home run of the game. That was the end of the day for Cole, who allowed three runs on six hits and three walks. She struck out one.
Lela Workcame on in relief and retired the only three batters she faced, keeping the score 3-2.
Arbino came on to hold the lead for San Diego State and sat down the first two batters with looking strikeouts. A two-out double for Brittany McCraykept the game alive and an error put runners on the corners injected even more life into the Broncos. Rather than more heroics, a foul out ended the game and the Aztecs evened the series.
O'Toole earned the win in the second game, allowing two runs on nine hits and one walk in seven innings.
The Broncos had 10 hits for the game. It is just the sixth time in the last three seasons Boise State has lost a game in which it has double-digit hits.
The teams meet Sunday at 1 p.m. (MT) for the series finale. It is Fan Appreciation Day at Dona Larsen Park.