Easy for Esparza

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. (UCFKnights.com) - Back in her home state of California, UCF freshman first baseman Jazmine Esparza registered her first career hit - a walkoff single - in the ninth inning to lift the Knights over Cal Poly, 2-1, on Friday at the Mary Nutter Classic.

With over 20 mph winds blowing in from left field, the contest was scoreless through regulation due to solid pitching from freshman Alea White and Lindsey Chalmers. Each team only notched one base hit during the first seven innings.

After Cal Poly (4-2) took a 1-0 lead in the top of the eighth frame, another California product, senior left fielder Linnea Goodman, delivered a game-tying RBI to lead off the frame and keep the game going for UCF (3-3).

Freshman Firsts

  • White (1-3) went the distance and notched her first career victory.
  • The Land O'Lakes, Fla., native recorded five strikeouts and only allowed three hits.
  • The Knights infield was perfect in making plays behind White.
  • The walkoff single by Esparza, who entered as a pinch hitter in the seventh inning, was the first career hit for the Sylmar, Calif., native.

A Number of Chances

  • UCF had a number of opportunities to win the game in regulation, but left 10 runners stranded on the base paths.
  • The Mustangs had a similar fate by leaving nine runners on the base paths.
  • A leadoff infield single by senior shortstop Brittany Solis and walk drawn by sophomore first baseman Cassady Brewer started the second inning before both were left stranded.
  • The Knights were kept quiet until the seventh inning when a Brewer walk and fielding error put runners at the corners with one out. A pair of fly outs ended the threat for the Mustangs.

Next Up
The Knights take on No. 9 UCLA at 6 p.m. ET in their second game of the afternoon at the Mary Nutter Classic. Fans can watch the contest with a subscription to FloSoftball.

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