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Vaqueros twice rolled by rallies

Softball: Losses to Bakersfield drop GCC below .500 in conference.

April 07, 2011|By Gabriel Rizk, gabriel.rizk@latimes.com

NORTHEAST GLENDALE — With solid pitching and early offense leading the way in both games, the Glendale Community College softball team had leads down the stretch of both halves of its Western State Conference doubleheader against visiting Bakersfield College on Thursday.

But twice, the Vaqueros came up short in protecting those leads, as the Renegades rallied for a pair of comeback wins, 6-1, and 5-4.

"It's the same old thing, it's mistakes," said Glendale Coach Dave "Hawk" Wilder, whose team fell to 10-20 and 5-6 in conference. "It's a young team. Our pitching was great again today. Nicolby [Atallah], who has really stepped it up over the last three or four games, threw a really, really good game."

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Just as starting pitcher Jennifer Meza was effective in holding a 1-0 lead in the opener before Bakersfield took a 2-1 lead in the fifth and broke it open with four runs (one earned) in the seventh, Atallah was sharp for most of the second game.

She allowed two runs in the opening frame on a leadoff walk, a pair of singles and a ball up the middle that ricocheted off the second-base bag for a double, but had a 3-2 lead by the time she returned to the circle in the second and held Bakersfield scoreless on one hit over the next three innings.

"In the first inning, I struggled a little bit finding my zone but I felt from the second to seventh inning I got in a groove," Atallah said.

The Vaqueros' first inning was ignited by center fielder Nancy Pinedo (two for four), who reached on a bunt and stole second base. Brandy Morin then collected the first of her four hits in the game with a single to shortstop that moved Morin to third, where she was able to score on a 7-4 double play one batter later.

Catcher Brittany Wright started a two-out rally with a single to left and scored when Sam Dickens' single to center field was mishandled for an error. Brittni Spear (two for four) singled up the middle to plate Dickens, who went two for four, for a 3-2 lead.

Hitting in the second game wasn't a problem for the Vaqueros, who recorded 13 hits, but leaving runners on was, as they stranded seven and couldn't get a hit with the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the second. Glendale would get one run out of that situation when left fielder Casey Nicodemus scored from third base on a wild pitch to take a 4-2 lead.

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