For pitcher Alex Holmes, every pitch counts.
“My focus is pitch to pitch, throwing strikes and hitting good spots,” Holmes said. “It’s a goal not to show the other team any weaknesses. It’s okay to be mad at yourself, but don’t let anyone else know.”
For the Aggies, every game counts.
After splitting a doubleheader against Long Beach State on Saturday, UC Davis capped off the three-game series with a 2-1 victory.
Coach Karen Yoder said that her team’s overall chemistry served the Aggies well this weekend and will continue to aid the team as it moves into the latter half of league play.
Saturday – Game 1: UC Davis 5, Long Beach State 0
The Aggies struck first in game one of Saturday’s doubleheader as Holmes lined a double to left center to bring in both Jessica Gonzalez and Elizabeth Santana.
Marissa Araujo led off the next frame with a single and eventually came around to score on a wild pitch to give the Aggies the 3-0 lead.
The score remained the same until Gonzalez got things started in the sixth with a leadoff double.
Santana traded places with her as she belted another double, bringing in the fourth run.
Kylie Fan kept things moving as she capped off the inning with one last double to bring in the fifth and final Aggie run.
Dana Waldusky dominated in the circle, scattering just three hits and walking none. She posted four strikeouts and retired 15 of the first 16 batters she faced. The shutout marked Waldusky’s second on the season.
Saturday – Game 2: Long Beach State 2, UC Davis 0
The shutout theme continued into the second game, but this time it was not in UC Davis’ favor.
Pitching proved to be the key, as each team was held hitless until the fifth inning.
Holmes threw the first 3.1 innings, walking three and posting three strikeouts, before Waldusky came in to relieve.
Waldusky suffered the loss as the 49ers eventually picked up their two runs in the top of the seventh inning.
“We were tremendous on the mound,” Yoder said. “It was a great outing and Long Beach State is a great opponent.”
Holmes ended Long Beach State’s no-hitter in the bottom half of the seventh with a one-out single to account for UC Davis’ only hit.
“We didn’t take advantage of some crucial opportunities,” Yoder said. “The moment we get a runner on we have to do a good job in converting it and scoring.”
Sunday – UC Davis 2, Long Beach State 1
A couple Aggie errors in the top of the fifth inning allowed the 49ers to score first in the final game of the series.
In the bottom of that frame, it was Miller time.
In other words, it was time for Rachel Miller to reach first base on a walk and eventually move all the way around to tie the game at one.
“Rachel came in and did a tremendous job,” Yoder said.
Miller’s run changed the momentum at the plate as the Aggies scored later in the inning on an RBI by Fan to account for the final 2-1 score.
Holmes pitched a solid 5.1 innings before Waldusky came in to pitch in relief.
“Waldusky and I work really well together,” Holmes said. “It’s nice because she throws a little harder than I do and she keeps them off-balance. When I hand the ball off to her, I know she’s going to do great things.”
GRACE SPRAGUE can be reached at email@example.com.