STANFORD, Calif. – No. 21/19 Stanford rallied for six runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to defeat California 14-13 in the Pac-12 opener Friday night.
Down 13-8 in the seventh inning, the Cardinal rallied for six runs to cap a thrilling comeback victory. With Kylie Sorenson standing on first base with two outs, Stanford drew four consecutive walks to cut the Golden Bears lead to 13-10.
After California’s starting pitcher Nisa Ontiveros, who was relieved in the second inning, re-entered the game in the circle, Tylyn Wells ripped a solid ground ball that was too tough to handle for second baseman Mary Lee, scoring Bessie Noll, the third Cardinal run of the inning.
Kayla Bonstrom stepped to the plate and hit a walk off ground ball single that stayed just fair down the first base line.
The game was a slugfest with Stanford batting .412 on the night with 14 hits and 11 walks. The game featured 33 hits, 17 walks and 27 runners left on base. Stanford utilized three pitchers while California threw four different arms.
White, Cassandra Roulund and Bonstrom led the team offensively, accounting for nine of Stanford’s 14 hits. White went 4-for-5 with a triple, a double, two singles and five RBI while Roulund went 3-for-5 with three singles.
Bonstrom was 2-for-5 on the day with a double and a walk-off single down the right field line to end the game in the bottom of the seventh. It was the second walk off hit for the Cardinal in as many games after picking up a 3-2 decision in the seventh last Sunday against UC Davis.
Wells (2-0) earned her second collegiate victory after entering the circle in the top of the seventh inning and recording the third out. Sorenson pitched a majority of the game, allowing five earned runs, four walks and 11 hits in 5.2 innings.
California jumped to an early lead, scoring eight runs in the first two innings. Stanford chipped away in the first three innings, starting with a base-hit RBI from second baseman Erin Ashby that scored Bonstrom in the first inning. In the second, Sorenson brought in catcher Jessica Plaza and White with a single up the middle to cut the lead to 8-3.
The third inning was highlighted by a double to left-center by White that scored shortstop Hanna Winter and Wells. Bonstrom then hit a shot to right-center to bring in White and close the gap to 8-6.
California put up another run in the fourth inning on of a double by designated player Cheyenne Cordes to stretch the Golden Bear’s lead to 9-6.
The Cardinal answered in the bottom of the fifth inning with two runs. Wells walked to lead off the inning and White followed up with a triple off the top of the wall in center field, scoring Wells. White then crossed the plate on a sacrifice fly to center by Bonstrom.
California added insurance in the top of the seventh inning, scoring four runs. Danielle Henderson sparked the rally with a leadoff walk, followed by a trio of singles, putting the Bears up 13-8 going into the bottom of the seventh.
Stanford responded with six runs in the bottom half of the inning to earn the victory.
The Cardinal will remain home for a doubleheader on Saturday to decide the series against California. The first game is set to start at noon (PT) with the second game scheduled to follow at 2:30 p.m. Both of Saturdays games will be televised on the Pac-12 Network.