The Saddleback softball team won its first game of the season on Monday with a 12-1 victory over Mt. San Jacinto College in five innings. The Gauchos sent 12 batters to the plate in the opening inning in cruising to the win.
Saddleback was looking for its first win of the season after back-to-back losses to Pasadena City and Santa Barbara to start the season. The Gauchos didn't have to wait long, as the game was decided in the first inning of play.
Saddleback sent 12 batters to the plate in the bottom half of the first inning in making a statement. The Gauchos took advantage of five walks by Mt. San Jacinto starter Alisa Earl and mixed in a trio of hits. The first two runs came in on a double from Jasmine Beverly when she blasted a ball to left field to score McKenna Walton and Rylee Argue. Earl then proceeded to walk four of the next five batters as Saddleback built a 5-0 lead. The following batter was Argue, who singled down the left field line in her second at-bat of the inning as the lead grew to 7-0.
After a scoreless second inning, Saddleback tacked on another five runs in the bottom half of the third inning. The Gauchos again capitalized on spotty pitching, drawing four more walks while mixing in singles from Walton and Haley Rose. The final run of the inning came when Bridget Thornton scored on a wild pitch for a 12-0 lead.
Saddleback pitcher McKenna Walton was on top of her game. Walton struck out five while spreading around three hits over five innings of work to improve to 1-2 on the season.
Saddleback will play again Wednesday when they host Palomar College. The Gauchos and Comets are scheduled to start at 2:00 PM at Trani Field.