Home Run Hero
Sterling Shuster launched three home runs and Danielle Smith hit a walk-off sacrifice fly as LMU took two key PCSC games from San Diego Saturday at Smith Field
April 27, 2013
LOS ANGELES - Sophomore Sterling Shuster blasted three home runs and senior Danielle Smith provided a game-winning sacrifice fly as the LMU softball team earned a pair of crucial wins over Pacific Coast Softball Conference rival San Diego, 4-2 and 2-1, Saturday at Smith Field.
The Lions improve to 29-20 overall and 12-6 in PCSC play while the Toreros fall to 21-26 on the season and 6-12 in league action.
Shuster began the day by launching a pair of home runs that accounted for all four LMU runs in the doubleheader opener.
The sophomore second baseman struck again in the fifth, this time sending the two-out, 2-1 pitch out of the park to push the Lion lead to 4-2.
San Diego got a combined three baserunners in the final two frames, but would not get a runner past second base as the Lions hung on for the victory.
Sydney Gouveia recorded seven strikeouts while walking two and scattering three hits as she improved to 15-3 on the season. She surrendered a walk and two-run home run to Lauren Tomey in the top of the first, but settled in after that, retiring three straight in the second, fourth and fifth innings before closing the door with a strikeout to end the game.
In game two, Shuster gave LMU a 1-0 lead in the fourth on a long solo shot to left.
Dana Walduksy carried a no-hitter into the seventh before leadoff batter Chloe Kaneko knocked a single into right field. That broke things open as Tomey followed with a single to shallow left and Caitlin Rooney singled to center to send pinch runner Kylee Ordos across home plate for the game-tying run.
Waldusky got Mary Grabowski to fly out to right for the first out of the inning and Harman snagged a one-hopper by pinch hitter Kimberlee Shimizu and made the quick throw across the diamond for out No. 2. A groundout to short by Tatum Schultz on a nine-pitch at-bat sent the game into extra innings.
Waldusky returned to form in the top of the eighth, sitting three straight USD batters. LMU had a chance to end the game in the bottom of the inning but stranded a pair of runners on first and second.
The Toreros had their best chance in the ninth, loading the bases on two hits and a walk, but Waldusky got Tatum Schultz to ground into a fielder's choice out, leaving USD scoreless in the frame.
With the international tie break in effect beginning in the 10th, USD could only advance its runner to third as Waldusky got a strikeout, fly out and ground out.
Walduksy went the distance, fanning six, walking two and allowing five hits for one earned run. The senior improved to 9-15 on the season and 4-1 in her last five starts.
LMU will be in the hunt for a much needed series sweep on Sunday as it looks to inch closer to league-leader BYU, which took 3-of-4 from CSU Bakersfield this weekend, moving to 15-5 in the PCSC. First pitch Sunday between the Lions and Toreros is scheduled for noon.