Long Beach State extended its lead over Hawaii in the Big West softball standings with a doubleheader sweep on Saturday at 49er Softball Complex in Long Beach, Calif.
Long Beach State won the first game 5-3 behind pitcher Erin Jones-Wesley’s 11-strikeout performance. The 49ers then clinched the series with an 8-2 win in the second game. Sarah Carrasco gave Long Beach State (31-9, 8-0 BWC) the lead with a grand slam in the bottom of the fifth inning and the 49ers pushed UH (19-18, 4-4) four games back in the Big West race.
The series concludes with a single game on Sunday at 10 a.m, Hawaii time. The game will be shown on ESPN3.
Jones-Wesley gave up four hits and walked eight in a complete-game victory. She escaped a bases-loaded jam in the top of the first and the 49ers took the lead on Ashlynn Booker’s two run single in the bottom of the inning.
The 49ers led 4-0 through five innings before UH scratched out a run in the sixth on Sarina Jaramillo’s RBI groundout. The 49ers added a run in the sixth when Carrasco tripled to lead off the inning and Ashley Holmes followed with a double.
UH rallied with two out in the top of the seventh. Leisha Li’ili’i hit her 11th home run of the season, a two-run shot to left, to cut into LBSU’s lead. But Jones-Wesley ended the game with her 11 strikeout. Loie Kesterson went the distance and took the loss for UH.
UH led early in the second game, scoring on Li’ili’i’s RBI single in the first inning and another by Ulu Matagiese’s in the fourth.
Long Beach State erased a 2-1 deficit in the bottom of the fifth when Darian Tautalafua singled with the bases loaded. Carassco followed with her grand slam and pitcher Amanda Hansen closed out a complete-game win. UH’s Heather Morales gave up 13 hits, walked five and struck out one in the loss.