Apr 142002

Home can be an uncomfortable place sometimes; that was the case for the CSU women’s softball team this weekend.

The outcome of the Rams’ four-game home stand against UNLV (22-8 overall, 2-6 conference) and San Diego State University (31-19-1, 8-1) was disappointing as CSU lost three of the four games.

“We came out flat,” said senior first baseman Amanda Kocis. “We had a lot of mental mistakes and we can’t do that against conference opponents.”

The 1-3 home stand dropped the team’s overall record to 17-22 and its conference record to 4-6.

According to head coach Mary Yori, the Rams came out tentative in Friday’s 2-0 loss in game one against UNLV.

“We didn’t get any key hits and they did,” Yori said. “We didn’t capitalize even though we had the opportunities.”

In game two of the double-header, sophomore starting pitcher Megan Masser did not allow the Rams to suffer a similar defeat. In the 3-2 victory, Masser pitched six innings, allowing two runs on six hits and striking out six to win her fourth game of the season.

“I felt great today,” said Masser, who raised her record to 4-7 with the victory. “It felt so good to be at home and have the fans on our side for a change.”

Offensively, freshman Maren Christensen came up with a clutch three-run home run in the bottom of the third to give Masser run support.

“Coach is always telling us that we need to clutch up and get the big hit,” Christensen said. “I did that today.”

The confidence the Rams generated in the game two victory did not carry over into Sunday, as they dropped game one 3-1 and game two 4-1 to SDSU.

“Our players did not come out to take it to the conference leader,” Yori said.

Masser (4-8) suffered the loss in game one, pitching seven strong innings while giving three runs on 10 hits. But Masser’s strong performance did not match up to that of Aztec ace Bre DeSanta (12-8).

“We knew ahead of time that they were really good hitters,” said DeSanta, who held the Rams to one run and allowing only five hits. “My plan basically was not to let them get consecutive hits and avoid the big inning.”

In game two, starter Melanie Mahoney appeared to be leading the Rams to a series split but could not hold on to a 1-0 lead in the sixth, as she gave up four hits and three runs to the Aztecs, including a two-run home run to SDSU senior Tiffany Goudy.According to Yori, the Rams had plenty of opportunities to score in the game, out hitting the Aztecs 12 to six, but they could not manage that clutch hit.

“We did not play team offense today,” Yori said. “We’ve proven we’re capable of hitting with everyone in the conference, we just have to put that big inning together.” n

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