DAVIS, Calif. – Junior catcher Mariah Cochiolo (right) collected a team-leading two hits, but a three-run fifth inning from UC Davis helped propel the Aggies to a 4-0 victory against the Cal Poly softball team during the 2013 regular season finale between both programs at LaRue Field.
Held to a solitary hit over the first three innings by Mustang starting sophomore righthander Chloe Wurst (11-16), UC Davis (25-27, 11-13) broke Saturday's deadlock in the fourth. After leading off the Aggie half of the inning with a base hit, third baseman Kayla Tyler reached second through first baseman Kelly Schulze's sacrifice bunt and third following shortstop Christa Castello's fielder's choice. Three pitches later, Aggie second baseman Chandler Wagner flew out to center field to bring home Tyler for a 1-0 UC Davis advantage.
The Aggies required just another inning to put Saturday's contest out of reach. With one out and two Aggies in scoring position, right fielder Jasmine Lee produced a fielder's choice that plated center fielder Megan Guzman from third. Tyler followed by a dropping a single down the right field line that scored left fielder Cat Guidry. Trying to come up with Tyler's hit, Mustang junior right fielder Cami Brown bobbled the ball and Lee scored on the miscue to put UC Davis up 4-0.
Cal Poly's best chance to break through against UC Davis starting righthander Jessica Thweatt (6-6) occurred during the top of the second with Cochiolo leading off with a single, stealing second and reaching third through junior designated player Emily Ceccacci's sacrifice bunt. Freshman first baseman Breana West, however, fouled out and junior left fielder Lauren Moreno struck out to end any threat.
The Mustangs enjoyed one final chance to get on the scoreboard during the top of the seventh as Ceccacci and West strung together successive one-out hits. Thweatt, however, induced a pop out from Moreno and a game-ending groundout from senior center fielder Whitley Gerhart.
Wurst finished with three strikeouts against zero walks for Cal Poly.
Saturday's game marked the final collegiate contest for Gerhart, who departs having appeared in 179 of a possible 197 games during her four-year career.
Overall, the Mustangs are expected to retain 16 letterwinners from their 2013 roster.