CSUEB softball starts season on high note

Marissa Marshall,
Staff Writer

Victory, victory, victory and another victory.

The Cal State East Bay women’s softball team went 4-0 this weekend as they opened the 2017 season in a double-header against the Academy of Art on Friday.

In the first game, the Academy of Art was the first to put points on the board in the first and third innings, which put them up 2-0 over East Bay. The lead didn’t last long; East Bay scored 12 runs in the fourth inning and 2 in the fifth.

The biggest contribution was from freshman utility player Emilie Portesi, who hit a home run to left center field in the top of the fourth inning and gave the Pioneers their first score of the game. Moments later, in the same inning, Portesi hit another home run to center field, which plated sophomore infielder Anissa Maldonado and catcher Ali Cerminara. Portesi hit a third home run in the fifth inning, which scored senior infielder Marisa Lerma. East Bay won the game 14-2.

“I went into the game just excited to finally play and did not want to let the first game jitters to get me, so I was just stoked to have such a fun and successful first game,” Portesi said.

In the second game against the Urban Knights, the Pioneer’s bats stayed hot, as sophomore outfielder Courtney Leyba opened the game with a home run, followed by a home run by her teammate Lerma, which put them up 3-0. Leyba finished the first two games 5-for-7 at the plate, with 3 runs batted in. After the homer’s, the Pioneers continued to hit well and put points on the board. By the bottom of the third, they were up 13-0.

The Pioneers looked very confident and comfortable in their first two games, in which they hit 7 home runs. On Saturday, East Bay faced Holy Names University in another successful double header.

The first game was tied at zero until the bottom of the third inning, when junior infielder Haley Keahi doubled to left field and Leyba scored. Moments later, Cerminara flied out to right field, Portesi scored and the Pioneers led 2-0 going into the fourth inning.

Freshman pitcher Abby Greer did not let a single Holy Names player reach base until the fourth inning. She struck out 8 Hawks in the game. East Bay went on to shutout Holy Names 8-0, scoring in every inning after the second.

The women’s batting remained on fire and they won the second game 13-5. Holy Names took a 4-0 lead in the first two innings, but in the bottom of the third, East Bay scored seven straight runs and took a 7-4 lead. The Hawks scored one more run in the fourth and East Bay scored 5 runs in the fifth and 1 run in the sixth to give them the 13-5 win.

”Our goal the season is prove people wrong,” Leyba said. “ A lot of people might not see us as a strong team, but I think this weekend showed that we are.”

The Pioneers are now 4-0 to start off this season. Last year, East Bay won one game and lost another in their double header against these two teams.

“I hope to get one percent better each game,” Portesi said. “I think we will be able to bring diversity to the plate and on the field each game.”