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Glendale Community College softball takes two

Softball: Walk-off home run by Mendoza propels GCC to sweep of Bakersfield.

April 11, 2013|By Nathan Cambridge, Special to the News-Press
  • Glendale Community College's Claire Ortiz goes for a slap hit in a game with Bakersfield College.
Glendale Community College's Claire Ortiz goes… (Tim Berger/Staff…)

GLENDALE — The Glendale Community College softball team had a chance in the second game of a double dip against Bakersfield College Thursday afternoon to finish a sweep of the three-game season series against its foe from the Western State Conference Blue Division.

The Vaqueros were poised to do just that, taking a three-run lead into the top of the final inning before the visitors tied it up. However, GCC dug deep and salvaged the sweep on the strength of a two-run walk-off homer on the initiative of Vanessa Mendoza, giving the home team a 6-4 victory.

“It was supposed to be a bunt sign, but I just thought [the pitch] was juicy and fat that I just wanted to hit it,” Mendoza said of her game-winning hit. “I wanted a hit, I wanted it to end it, and I wanted to win, so I just hit it.”

Glendale (16-17-1, 6-8) had a masterful pitching performance from Kayla Evans through six innings before the sophomore gave up three runs in the top of the seventh, tying the contest at 4.

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“Phenomenal,” Glendale coach Dave “Hawk” Wilder said of Evans’s pitching effort. “For six innings they couldn’t touch her.”

The Vaqueros did not panic and started the bottom of the frame with a single to left field by Nicole Saucillo. Mendoza, who had led off the fifth inning with an inside-the-park home run, followed and smashed the third pitch of her at-bat deep into left field, earning a trip around the bases and an end to the game with her team on top, 6-4.

“I’m like on high right now, really happy,” Mendoza said. “I can’t stop smiling. It was so fun.”

It was the first two-home-run game for the sophomore shortstop of the Vaqueros, who belted three homers in the game. Freshman Amanda Carriedo also led off the fifth inning with an inside-the-park home run to deep center field.

“Today my assistant coach Sal [Pizzo] said to me our girls look loose, but ready,” Wilder said, “and they played the best two games we’ve played in a long time.”

Glendale handily won the first game of the day, 11-1, in a game that was halted after five innings due to the mercy rule. In that game, right-hander Katie Bakhshian struck out five in her five innings of work. Sofia Garcia, Megumi Furuta, and Jena Kaser each had two RBIs.

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