Long Beach State softball split a doubleheader with the Bears of UC Berkeley Saturday afternoon, dropping the first game 7-1 and winning the second 3-2.
The Beach got behind early as senior pitcher Kellie White gave up four runs in the first inning, including an RBI double by UC Berkeley’s Alexis Bishop and a three-run homer to Makena Smith.
Long Beach had an opportunity to tie the game in the bottom of the first, but sophomore Emily Salazar hit a pop-up fly with two outs and the bases loaded to end the comeback attempt.
Sophomore Cam Cecil hit a stand-up double in the bottom of the second inning to put Long Beach on the board 4-1.
Cal added to their lead with a double by outfielder Mikayla Coelho in the fifth to up the lead to four runs.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Beach had a two-out rally with runners in scoring position, but infielder Kyra Synder struck out swinging to end the inning.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, reliever Morgan Quinlan came in for White, who falls to 13-6 for the season. White finished with 6.0 IP and 4 strikeouts, but gave up five runs.
Bishop hit a two-run single off Quinlan in the top of the seventh, extending Berkeley’s lead to 7-1.
Game two started on a scary note when Long Beach infielder Cam Cecil collided with teammate Breezy Wise while the former caught a popfly to end the first inning.
Both players walked off the field independently but did not return in the next defensive series.
Wise missed the top of the second defensively but returned in the bottom of the inning to hit a single and steal a base.
Freshman Sara Olson hit an RBI single to drive in Wise to give the Beach their first lead of the contest 1-0.
Cal threatened Long Beach with the bases loaded in the top of the sixth inning, but Aleia Agbayani’s fly ball ended the inning and the threat.
Long Beach senior Suzy Brookshire almost broke the game open in the bottom of the sixth, but the combination of the wind and a great catch by Cal’s Sabrina Nunez robbed her of a home run.
Two errant throws spoiled Long Beach pitcher Samantha Fowler’s shutout, allowing Bears outfielder Diamond Holland to score from third base to tie the game 1-1 heading into the bottom of the seventh.
Cecil returned to the game at the bottom of the seventh after missing most of the contest, but struck out swinging.
Cal made their second pitching change of the game with bases loaded, bringing in game one starter Chloe Romero.
Romero saved the inning by striking out Rylie Seip, and Alyssa Gonzalez hit a fly ball to centerfield for the third out to retire the side and send the game into extra innings.
In the top of the ninth, D’asha Saiki hit a solo home run off Fowler to put the Bears up 2-1.
Naomi Hernandez hit a double over left-center in the bottom of the ninth to drive in Olson and tie the score at 2.
Kyra Snyder hit another double to the same spot to drive in the winning run as the Beach won game two of the double-header 3-2.
Long Beach will end the season with a battle for the Big West title against the first-place Titans of Cal St. Fullerton beginning May 14.