The Saddleback softball team defeated San Diego Mesa College, 11-3, on Monday in a makeup game that was postponed in February due to rain. The Gauchos hammered out 14 hits in 5+ innings, ending the game in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Saddleback took advantage of five Mesa errors in improving to 18-11 on the season. Carley Buonarigo, Hope Manuszak and Amber Arrington had three hits apiece as the Gauchos blew the game open in the fifth inning and never looked back.
Reis Birkett started the scoring with her fourth home run of the season in the bottom of the first inning for a 2-0 lead. Manuszak blasted her second of the year in the bottom of the fourth for a 5-2 lead, right after Mesa had closed the gap to 4-2. Shortly thereafter, Drew Moore doubled home Summer Smith and Buonarigo followed with an RBI single for a 7-2 lead, turning aside any hope for an Olympian comeback.
Saddleback added three more runs in the fifth inning with three hits, two walks and an error. Manuszak's single scored Nelsa Delagente to start the scoring and advancing Amanda Padilla to third base. Amber Arrington later singled home Padilla and the lead was 9-3. Emma Gastelum would also come around to score on the play after the catcher threw down to second base to get Arrington trying to stretch the play into a double, making it 10-3.
Needing one more run to close out the game in the sixth inning, the Gauchos strung together three straight hits with two outs, with the last being a single from Manuszak to score Haley Rose with the winning run.
Manuszak finished 3-for-3 with three RBI in the game. Arrington was 3-for-3 with two RBI while Buonarigo was 3-for-4 with two runs-scored.
Delagente started on the hill and pitched five innings in picking up the win. Buonarigo pitched the sixth in mop-up time.
Saddleback has a big week ahead with a game at Santiago Canyon on Wednesday and a home date with Riverside on Friday. The game on Wednesday at SCC is scheduled for 3:00 PM while the home date against RCC on Friday is scheduled for 2:00 PM.