On Saturday, Mar. 23, the LMU softball team (21-14 overall) took on the Long Beach State Dirtbags (13-16 overall) in a doubleheader. The Lions split the two games, winning the first before falling in the finale. Here are three major takeaways from the games.
3. Lions give the bullpen a break
The Lions were graced with solid pitching performances by both starting pitchers on Saturday. In the first game of the doubleheader, junior pitcher Samantha Manti spun seven shutout innings, picking up two strikeouts against no walks, and gave up only one hit the entire game. Manti’s record for the year now stands at 9-4, with a 2.96 ERA over 79 innings pitched. Manti’s efforts were enough for the Lions to come away with a 3-0 victory. In the second game of the series, sophomore pitcher Linnay Wilson also went the distance, going 4.1 innings in an abbreviated mercy-ruled loss. Wilson gave up eight runs, though only three of those were earned. The other five were unearned due to three errors by the Lions defense. While the Lions came away with the loss, the effort of Wilson meant the Lions could rest their bullpen, which had seen heavy action in the past few days.
After senior right-handed pitcher Hannah Bandimere threw her own no-hitter against Western Carolina earlier this month, the Lions were on the other side of a no-hitter this weekend. In the second game of the doubleheader, Long Beach State starting pitcher Ashley Coleman threw five no-hit innings. The Lions only managed to get on base once, courtesy of a walk in the fourth inning by redshirt senior catcher Irma Sanchez. They surely hope their offense gets back on track next week, as they start WCC play in two weeks.
1. Underclassmen coming through
The first game of the double header’s lineup was filled with underclassmen. Of the nine players on the diamond, seven of them were sophomores or younger. The young lineup managed just fine, with sophomores Molly Grumbo and Andrea Gonzalez each contributing 2 hits. On defense, no errors were committed.
The Lions continue their season next Tuesday, Mar. 26, with another doubleheader against California Baptist University at Smith Field, the first game starting at noon.
This is the opinion of Zach Johnson, a sophomore International Relations major from Tai Tam, Hong Kong. Tweet comments to @LALoyolan or email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.