Clutch bombs hit by first baseman Bree Howard and designated player Brittany Gonzales rallied the Pasadena City College softball team to an 11-6, South Coast Conference North Division victory at East Los Angeles College Thursday evening. The game, which included a 20-minute delay for a protest filed by PCC on a uniform issue for ELAC, was a marathon affair that lasted three hours and three minutes.
Now No. 9 in the SoCal Region RPI rankings, the Lancers are 16-7 overall and 4-1 in the SCC North, just a half game behind first-place Mt. San Antonio (4-0). The Huskies drop to 14-12 and 1-3 in the division.
With PCC trailing 5-3 in the top of the fifth, Howard, a slugging first baseman, hit a mammoth, towering, 2-run homer over the left-center field fence to tie it. Howard, who has all seven of the Lancers home runs this season, batted 3-for-4 and added a steal. She one-hopped the right-center fence with a RBI double in the first. In her final at bat, she was a robbed of a line hit on a lunging catch by ELAC centerfielder Nicole Zamora.
In the sixth, the Lancers batted around their lineup to score five runs as Gonzales launched a 2-out, 3-RBI double off the base of the left field wall. Another member of the "Killer Br's" is letterman third baseman Brittany Ching, who batted 2-for-4 and continued to play gold glove defense with a sparkling dive and throw out to first to end the fourth inning.
PCC's offense also received boosts by shortstop Karina Moreno, who was 3-for-4 with a triple and three runs scored, and rightfielder Jazmine Cabrera, who scored four runs, batted 3-for-4, drove in two runs, drew a walk and stole a base.
Angel Wintercorn, the third pitcher used by PCC head coach Monica Tantlinger, did the job as she hurled four innings, allowing three hits and one run to up her win-loss record to 5-4.
On Mar. 18, PCC swept a doubleheader at San Diego Mesa, winning by scores of 4-3 in nine innings in game 1 and 10-5 in game 2.
The Lancers scored a run on a Mesa error in the seventh to force extra innings at 1-1. With the international tie-breaker in use during the extra frames (a runner starts the inning at second base), PCC scored two runs in the eighth on RBI singles by second baseman Alex Howard and Gonzales.
The Olympians tied it at 3-3 in the bottom of the inning on a 2-RBI single by Eliana Godinez. Wintercorn came into relieve and worked her way out of a bases-loaded situation to send it to the ninth. PCC scored the game-winning run when centerfielder Angel Urbina (2-for-4) scored on a Mesa error. Wintercorn finished her second shutout inning to clinch the win.
In the finale of the twinbill, Alex Howard went 3-for-5 with two RBI and Bree Howard was 2-for-2 with two RBI and a double to pace the Lancers. Moreno and rightfielder Alise Archuleta each added two hits. Once again it was a reliever sparking the pitching staff as Lauren Jackson threw the final four innings, allowing five hits and two runs to up her record to 4-0.
The Lancers keep up their busy schedule with a non-conference game at Citrus College today (Firday, 1 p.m.), then a trip to the Ventura Spring Games Tournament on Saturday, Mar. 25. PCC faces Glendale at 8 a.m. and then Cuesta at 10:15 a.m.