WEST COVINA, Calif. – After scoring 20 runs in two games to open the 2017 NAIA SoCal Classic, Menlo College Softball was looking for more on day two. They have three games on the schedule for day two, but they took care of business in the first game, using the bats again to sink another opponent. This time it was the College of Idaho standing in the way of the Oaks, as seven different Oaks recorded hits, highlighted by a grand slam from Natalie Dorsey, en route to a 12-3 win. Menlo improves to 9-3 while the Yotes fall to 1-1 early on in the season.
Things did not get off to the best start for the Oaks in this game, as they fell behind in an early 2-0 hole with Jordan Kennedy on the mound. Kennedy has been solid for Menlo in the early portion of the season, as the lone returner in the pitching staff. She got the start in the first game of today's action, but she allowed four hits in the first inning, including a pair of run scoring singles. The first inning would be the only inning she would appear on the mound, as Victoria Cervantes relieved Kennedy of her duties in the second. The bats backed up Kennedy after the hiccup in the first, as Cassie Grana singled with one out and advanced to second on an error. Keeley Hernandez, with six RBIs yesterday, added to her run-producing resume in the first with an RBI single to score Grana. Bryce Etzler walked, and with Hernandez on third, the Oaks attempted to employ a double-steal. Etzler was thrown out at second, but it allowed Hernandez to score and tie the game.
The Oaks pulled ahead in the bottom of the second and would not look back, and it started thanks to Dorsey. Her two-run single that scored McKenna Vega and Brooke Shigematsu gave Menlo a 4-2 lead in the inning, and Grana followed up with a single that scored Dorsey. Three runs scored during the second, and the exclamation point was about to be applied in the third. With two outs and the bases loaded, Lauren Harrison singled to score Ariana Belarde, making it 6-2. That's when Dorsey came back to the plate, and she crushed a home run to left field, clearing the bases and plating four runs. Menlo's 10-2 lead would be more than enough, adding two more runs in the fourth to eventually win the game 12-3.
Victoria Cervantes earned the win in relief of Kennedy, pitching the final four innings, allowing just one hit, one run, two walks, and two strikeouts. Dorsey was one of four Oaks with multiple hits, going 2-3 with 2 runs and 6 RBI. Other Menlo players with multiple hits were Grana, Hernandez, and Brooke Menesini.
Menlo has two more games on the day, back-to-back style at the end of day two festivities. The University of British Columbia game begins at 6:00 PM, while the Northwest Christian game will follow at 8:00 PM.