Long Beach State softball’s season opener resulted in two dropped games in a doubleheader at the University of San Diego Wednesday, leaving the team searching for their first win in nearly a year.
The bats never came to life in the team’s first game back as they fell to San Diego 4-0. The Beach was held to one hit and four walks by USD’s McKenna Braegelmann. The only hit came in the top of the third thanks to a double by shortstop Cam Cecil.
The team’s best opportunity to score came in the top of the fourth inning, when they had two runners on with no outs. However, a foul out and a double play thwarted any plans of scoring.
Long Beach pitcher Kellie White pitched a solid six innings, but got hit around a little bit and ended up with the loss. She gave up four runs (three earned) on nine hits while striking out five batters. Key errors made by the defense in the bottom of the fourth allowed USD to slip away with the lead, and eventually the win.
The evening game was a pitching duel between the two teams. Long Beach starter Morgan Quinlan threw four solid innings, striking out four players and only giving up one run on four hits. USD starter Katlin Entrup was able to go three innings only allowing one run.
As the game turned over to the bullpens, Long Beach was able to squeeze out a one-run lead in the sixth inning after an errant throw by SDU’s center fielder allowed Alyssa Gonzalez to score. Reliever Samantha Fowler, who had thrown two scoreless innings to this point, looked to close the game out in the seventh.
Fowler had trouble however, as two singles and a botched ball in the outfield allowed San Diego to tie it back up. With the bases loaded and only one out, Fowler allowed a walk off hit to USD hitter Sofia Delgado, sealing the game.
The loss puts the Beach in an 0-2 start to the season. This was the first series Long Beach has played in since they won against Boston University on March 12, 2020.
The team will look to bounce back and get their first win against UCLA Saturday at 12 p.m. The team will play at home for the first time in nearly a year.