Regals Close Out Final Homestand with Sweep of No. 22 Chapman

CLU wins 6-5, 6-2

Kayla Sakamoto had the game-winning diving catch in game one as CLU swept No. 22 Chapman Friday.

Photo: Tracy Maple

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Timely hitting and solid pitching carried Cal Lutheran to a doubleheader sweep of Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) foe Chapman Friday afternoon at Hutton Field. Kelly Lookwood delivered a two-out go-ahead RBI single in the bottom of the sixth in game one as CLU defeated the Panthers 6-5 and Shannon Tinsley’s double off the wall broke game two open with the Regals pulling away 6-2 to complete the sweep. Since starting 4-17 on the year, the Regals are now 12-3 over their last 15 games.

Cal Lutheran struck first in game one when Tinsley, who was hitless in her last 10 at bats, laced a double into the right-center field gap to score Kayla Sakamoto. Tinsley actually moved to third when the relay throw got away from the shortstop but she was stranded as Chapman starting pitcher Cassie Oregel got the next Regal to fly out and end the inning.

Chapman quickly retook the lead in the top of the second when Kerry Peterson led off with a double off the right field wall. She was brought in two batters later after Rhianna Stepler-Camp delivered a single back up the middle. The Panthers took the lead when Karina Muniz scored on a CLU error and then broke the game open with a three-run double Lisa Perez, putting CU up 5-1.

The Regals pulled even with the Panthers in bottom of the fourth with four runs. Tinsley led off by getting hit by a pitch and later scoring thanks to a double from Shonna Christianson. The next batter, Christina Hunter, beat out what looked like a routine ground ball to the second basemen, allowing Ryanna Morua to score. After Liz Mertel singled, Katelyn Downing lifted a sacrifice fly to left field, plating Christianson. CLU got one more run when Sakamoto hit a dribbler to the third baseman who was unable to field it cleanly, letting the tying-run to score.

Lockwood came up with the winning hit in the bottom of the when she went the opposite way to deliver a two-out run scoring single, putting CLU up 6-5.

After Blake Lewis walked the first batter of the top of the seventh, she got two fielder’s choice ground outs before Sakamoto made a highlight-reel diving grab in centerfield to give the Regals their second win over a ranked opponent this season.

Lewis (2-4) earned the win after coming on in relief in the third inning. The freshman went 5.0 shutout innings, allowing just one hit.

Hunter and Lockwood had two hits an RBI each to lead the Regals offensively.

Oregel (11-5) suffered the complete game loss for the Panthers.

Perez led the Panthers with one hit and three RBIs.

Game two saw the teams exchange runs in the second inning and it wasn’t before Tinsley missed a homerun by mere inches but instead settled for the go-ahead two-run double in the bottom of the fifth. The Regals would eventually push across five runs in the inning including an RBI double from Lewis and pinch-hit RBI single from Danika Green.

Christianson (6-6) went all seven innings and allowed just six hits while striking out four. She also added two hits at the plate.

Lewis went 2-for-2 while Brittany Labbe also had two hits for the Regals.

CU starting pitcher Natalie Both (11-6) took the loss for the Panthers. Jenny Richards was the lone Panther to have two hits in game two.

Cal Lutheran (16-20, 11-15 SCIAC) closes out its 2013 season Saturday, April 20, when it travels to Whittier to take on the Poets for a doubleheader. First pitch is set for noon.

Game 1: CLU 6 CU 5
Game 2:
CLU 6 CU 2