KAJIKAWA CLASSIC CENTRAL
TEMPE, Ariz. – Keyed by senior righthander Sierra Hyland's fourth career no-hitter during a 2-1 victory against Purdue, the Cal Poly softball program opened the 2017 season Friday morning at the Arizona State-hosted Kajikawa Classic with a pair of victories. The Mustangs also topped San Diego 8-6 in Friday's second game.
During Friday's season opener versus Purdue, Hyland – who tied Anna Cahn's six-year-old program record with her 90th career start – struck out nine Boilermaker hitters against three walks. She retired the first nine hitters she faced before allowing a walk to Purdue center fielder Maya Hughes to begin the fourth inning. Hyland retired the next hitter but, with one down in the fourth, Purdue pitcher Kaitlyn Moody reached on an error by Cal Poly sophomore first baseman Megan Nordin. The miscue allowed Hughes to score.
Cal Poly, however, already held a 2-0 lead at that point, built with a run in the top of the first inning after junior center fielder Amanda Sandoval scored on a passed ball by Purdue catcher Kaylah Hampton, and with a run in the second after sophomore catcher Makenna Young's one-out single was followed by a run-scoring double from sophomore right fielder Crimson Kaiser.
Staked to the lead before she tossed a pitch, Hyland retired the final batter she faced in the fourth and the Purdue side in the fifth and sixth. She stranded one more Purdue baserunner in the seventh after her third and final walk.
During Friday's second victory versus San Diego, Cal Poly received a leadoff home run from Sandoval in the top of the first inning.
After San Diego equalized in the bottom half of the first, Cal Poly surged ahead once more in the third with junior designated player Stephanie Heyward belting a two-run homer.
San Diego, however, grabbed a 4-3 lead with a three-run third inning. The Mustangs though tacked on four more runs in the top of the fourth through a run-scoring double by senior second baseman Ashley Tornio, a two-run double by Sandoval and an RBI single from Heyward.
With Cal Poly leading 7-4 entering the bottom of the fifth, Mustang freshman righthanded reliever Steffi Best surrendered two runs. Cal Poly, however, cemented the scoreline in the top of the seventh as Young swatted a solo homer to left center field.
Brought on in relief to begin the sixth, Hyland struck out three Toreros in the final two innings to tie the Cal Poly career save record of five set by Eva Nelson (2002-05).
Sandoval finished with a game high three hits while Cal Poly produced 14 as a team versus San Diego.
Cal Poly continues action at the Kajikawa Classic on Saturday, Feb. 11 versus Creighton (8 a.m. PT) and Western Michigan (2:15 p.m.).