Thursday, March 5, 2015

THURSDAY: Spartans split at Judi Garman Classic

The opening day of the Judi Garman Classic came and went Thursday, and it contained some mixed results for San Jose State.  The Spartans got off on the right foot with a 4-3 win over Long Beach State in their opening game, but were run-ruled by No. 1-ranked Florida 9-1 in five innings later in the day.  In the day's first game, Alyssa Martinez picked up SJSU's first hit of the game, which was a 2-run homer in the second inning following a walk.  All four Spartans runs would come home that frame as Emma Entzminger hit an RBI single and Jessica Madrid hit a sacrifice fly.  Long Beach State (10-13 overall), down 4-1 at one point, battled back to make it a 4-3 game in the fifth, but Spartans reliever Allison Lang held the tying run at third base that inning.  A leadoff single by the 49ers in the sixth also amounted to nothing as Lang earned the save in relief of starter Madison Fish.  The 49ers out-hit SJSU seven to six.  Against the unbeaten and top-ranked Gators, San Jose State had some big chances early but couldn't make the most of those opportunities.  At one point out-hitting Florida six to three, SJSU had a run in, and the bases loaded with one out in the fourth.  Sharon-Renae Estrada singled off Gators starter Lauren Haeger (10-0) to begin the fourth, and moved to third on a double by Martinez.  A one-out walk to Taylor Purdy loaded the bases before Entzminger got the Spartans on the scoreboard with an RBI single.  With the bases loaded and the tying runs aboard, Haeger got Nicole Schultz to foul out, and Michelle Cox to strike out to end the threat.  It would prove costly as Florida pulled away in the bottom of the inning against SJSU reliever Katelyn Linford.  In the fifth, Colette Riggs came on and gave up a 2-run homer that ended the game and gave SJSU its second run-rule loss in less than a week.  San Jose State is now 15-7 overall after its Thursday split.  The Spartans' next game is against 3rd-ranked Michigan at 9:30 am Friday morning.  The Wolverines were swept Thursday in a 2-0 loss to Arizona State and 7-4 loss to Florida.  The No. 1 Gators, meanwhile, will play two more games tomorrow before meeting Fresno State on Saturday.  The Mountain West's leading hitter entering Thursday's play, SJSU's Jessie Hufstetler (.508 batting average), was held hitless, going 0-for-6.