March 19, 2008
FULLERTON, CA - Cal State Fullerton senior Kiki Munoz homered twice while junior Lauren Lupinetti slugged a round-tripper of her own to highlight the Titans' efforts in a 9-3 loss to the United States Women's National Team in an exhibition game to open the 2008 Judi Garman Classic on Wednesday night at Anderson Family Field.
Munoz hit her first home run in the fourth off former Arizona star Jennie Finch to draw Fullerton even and added a second on a line-drive shot to left in the seventh off former Tennessee hurler Monica Abbott.
Lupinetti added her solo shot in the fifth off Finch to account for the Titans' three runs.
The runs were the first surrendered by the U.S. National Team in 12 games this season as were the three home runs. The United States had outscored its opposition, 118-0, entering Wednesday night's game.
Jessica Mendoza, who finished 3-for-3, got the National Team on the board first in the third as Caitlin Lowe reached on an infield single and moved to second on a sacrifice by Natasha Watley for the second out.
That brought up Mendoza, who sent a Doucette offering to centerfield for her second double of the night, scoring Lowe to make it 1-0.
Munoz and the Titans tied it up in the fourth as the senior launched a shot over the fence in left field to tie the game at 1-1, snapping the National Team's shutout streak.
It remained that way until the top of the fifth when the United States rallied for seven runs, sending 12 batters to the plate, to take control of the game. Watley's infield single broke the tie, scoring Laura Berg, who tripled to lead off the inning, and Crystl Bustos added a two-run single to make it 4-1.
Andrea Duran (three-run shot) and former Fullerton All-American Jenny Topping (solo) then added back-to-back home runs for the 8-1 advantage and they never looked back.
Stacey Nuveman added a pinch-hit home run in the seventh to cap the scoring for the National Team before Munoz answered with her second home run of the night in the bottom of the inning.
Fullerton senior right-hander Jessica Doucette pitched well, allowing three runs on nine hits while striking out two in six innings of work. Freshman Ari Cervantes pitched one inning, allowing six runs (five earned) on four hits while striking out one.
Lisa Fernandez started for the United States, allowing only an infield hit to Crystal Vieyra in the third while striking out three in three innings of work. Finch earned the win despite giving up two runs on two hits in three innings, but she struck out eight of the 11 batters she faced.
Abbott pitched the final inning, surrendering a run on a hit while striking out three and walking one.
Play continues on Thursday morning (March 20) at 9 a.m. on both fields on the campus of Cal State Fullerton. The Titans will play their second game of the tournament at 3:30 p.m. as they take on New Mexico.
Complete results and box scores are available on the Judi Garman Classic tournament page at www.FullertonTitans.com.