California 3, Fresno St. 1

May 21, 2005

FRESNO, Calif. - Behind a two-run fifth and a six-inning relief effort from senior Kelly Anderson, the California softball team defeated Fresno State 3-1 on Saturday at Bulldog Diamond. The Bears and previously unbeaten Bulldogs will play a second game for a berth in the NCAA Tournament Super Regionals. Game No. 2 is slated for 5:30 p.m.

Cal (49-12), which lost their tournament opener Thursday evening to BYU, has won three consecutive games against elimination. Cal advanced to a date with the Bulldogs from the loser's bracket, having defeated Long Beach State (4-3) and BYU (9-0, five innings) in back-to-back games Friday.

For the first time in program history, the Bears have won three consecutive postseason games after losing the first of a regional tournament. It is just the second time Cal has won three straight regional games when facing elimination.

The Bulldogs (43-11) reached the championship with relative ease, having defeated Long Beach State Thursday, 4-0, and BYU, 3-0, on Friday behind a no-hitter from senior Jamie Southern.

Cal starting pitcher Kristina Thorson struck out two Bulldogs in the first inning but Fresno State jumped on the junior immediately in the second. First baseman Kristin Sylvester led off the inning with a ground-rule double over the left field wall. Thorson then hit left fielder Rachel Donaldson and was replaced in favor of Anderson. The senior promptly walked second baseman Jenna Cervantez before a sacrifice fly to left from designated player Shauna Johnson brought home Sylvester.

The Cal bats woke up in the bottom of the inning. Following a walk to second baseman Jessica Pamanian, Spencer earned a two-out base hit - the Bears' first of the afternoon off of Southern. Designated player Emily Friedman then singled to center field to bring Pamanian home and tie the game 1-1. Cal's score ended a 78-inning streak by Southern of not having allowed an earned run.

Right fielder Alex Sutton reached on an error by Bulldog shortstop Christina Clark to lead off the fifth. Two batters later, left fielder Lindsay James beat out an infield single before center fielder Kaleo Eldredge doubled down the right field to score third baseman Vicky Galindo for a 2-1 lead. With the speedy James at third, catcher Haley Woods laid down a squeeze bunt. The ball dribbled a foot in front of the plate and James scored with ease.

Anderson struck out four and allowed two hits in improving to 26-7. She has still not allowed a run this postseason. Southern (28-4) struck out five.

-- Courtesy Cal