HANFORD — McKenna Randall hit a three-run home run, Arlene Gudino drove in four runs and Sierra Pacific cruised to a 12-1 five-inning East Sequoia League victory over Lindsay on Thursday.
Randall’s home run to left field was her first of the season and came during an eight-run fourth inning, which ultimately proved to be the difference in the ballgame.
“I always know where my sweet spot is on my bat and I know what to do to get that,” Randall said. “As soon as I swung I felt the ball I knew it was a good one. I definitely did not know it was going to go over, but I’m definitely glad it did.”
She was inserted as a pinch hitter during the fourth inning and took advantage of a 2-1 count as she turned on the pitch and left no doubt of where it was headed.
The fourth inning started with the Golden Bears (12-6, 8-0 ESL) leading 4-0. The first three batters reached on an error, walk and another error, which also scored Chloe Correia.
With runners at first and second, Gudino singled in a run, her third of the day, and made it 6-0. Randall’s at-bat added three more runs and Lauren Simas followed with a walk. After a pair of outs, Simas scored on a wild pitch during Arianna Chavarin’s at-bat, which ended in a walk.
“With these types of games we need to always stay in it,” Randall said. “I know if we keep cheering, definitely gets up, if we do good plays, good hits it definitely gets us going.”
Two more walks loaded the bases before Isabella Solis was hit by a pitch and Gudino drew a bases-loaded walk to make it 12-0. Sierra Pacific batted around and sent 14 batters to the plate during the fourth inning and showed their patience with six walks.
“It started when McKenna came off the bench and hit that home run. Everybody just rubbed off that one hit,” Sierra Pacific coach Victor Chavarin said. “It’s a simple hit. Like I tell the girls, simple fundamentals, don’t go out there and try to kill the ball and you get good hits.”
The Cardinals (5-10, 2-7 ESL) scored in the top of the fifth inning after two singles and a fielder’s choice put runners on the corners. An error allowed a run to come home, but it wasn’t enough to stop the 10-run mercy rule.
Sierra Pacific scored in the first inning on an RBI single from Desiree Orosco. They added two more in the second on a two-run single from Gudino. She was 2-for-2 with four RBIs and a walk.
“I really wanted to get a hit since the last game I didn’t do so well,” Gudino said. “I wanted to prove to my coach what I can do and try to stand out.”
Simas scored in the third inning on an error to give the Golden Bears a 3-0 lead. Simas and Correia scored three runs apiece. Simas walked in each of her three at-bats and was active on the base pads with five stolen bases, including two in the fourth inning. Correia and Chavarin each stole two bases.
Randell finished with three RBIs, Solis had two RBIs and Orosco and Hoggard each had one.
Sierra Pacific pitcher Lauren Alarcon allowed three hits and one unearned run with four strikeouts on Thursday. It was her third league game allowing no earned runs and second start allowing three or fewer hits.
The game was the Golden Bears’ fourth five-inning victory in the ESL, a league-best. They’ve also won two game in six innings. Sierra Pacific has outscored its league opponents 130-26 for a plus-104 run differential.
Sierra Pacific will take part in the Tulare Classic Tournament beginning with a game against Farmersville (12-9, 5-4 ESL) on Saturday at 4 p.m. They will resume ESL play with a road game against Granite Hills on April 23 at 4 p.m.