Feb 222009
Authors: Keith Robertson

The Ram softball team returned home Sunday with the winning record they have been looking for the past few weeks. The Rams (9-6) went into the University of San Diego Tournament 5-5 but after winning four in row, with an overall record of 4-1 this weekend, the Rams have built some confidence to go atop their success.

The Rams swept the first and second days of the tournament, beating Long Beach State, Boise State and serving up two losses to San Diego, before losing their final game on Sunday.

On Friday the Rams squeaked by Long Beach 1-0. The Rams played good defense and freshman pitcher Kelli Eubanks pitched her second shutout of the season with three strikeouts and only five hits allowed. The offensive star of the game was sophomore Caitlan Stem, who went 3-4 with one RBI.

Another freshman pitcher, Dani Chaplin, threw a complete game later that day against San Diego in the 4-2 win. The young Colorado native won the game, allowing only one hit in the last two innings.

“Kelli and Dani pitched really well this weekend,” said coach Mary Yori. “We’re just really pleased with where they are. Their impact on the team has been really positive.”

The bats finally came alive for the Rams with three players being credited with RBIs against the Toreros that day, and the Rams were self-assured going into their next game, once again against San Diego.

CSU succeeded in repeating their Friday performance, going 2-0 the second day. They once again pounded San Diego, this time by a margin of eight runs, winning 9-1.

“We’re a young team and we’re going to have to grow into our bats a little. I thought our players really responded this weekend and swung the bats better,” said Yori.

The win marked the third against the Toreros this season. Once again Stem’s offense gave the Rams a lift, going 3-4 with an RBI and two runs scored.

Shortly after the slaying, the Rams took the field against the Boise State Broncos, winning a nail-biter 3-2. The Rams were able to seal the win when junior Allison Majam drove in Jenna Krogh for the go-ahead run in the fifth inning. Eubanks got her second victory of the tournament, solidifying herself as an up-and-coming pitching talent.

The Rams played their final game Sunday afternoon against Long Beach. The Rams held a one-run lead, but let it slip in the seventh inning ultimately losing 4-1.

“It was really disappointing. We just didn’t finish,” said Yori. “We didn’t throw the knock out punch and take care of business.”

The Rams will have another short week of practice before heading back out to California for the San Diego Classic Feb. 27.

Softball beat writer Keith Robertson can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

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