The Fullerton Hornets Softball team defeated the Cypress Chargers 5-2 in the first game of Friday’s doubleheader and lost 7-4 in game two.
The Hornets had another competitive day against the Chargers on Wednesday, winning the first game 2-0 and losing the second 14-6 at Cypress College.
Athletic matchups between the Hornets and Chargers always bring passion and a fierce rivalry because the teams come from the same district.
However, this week’s softball matchup was even more competitive because these two teams sit atop the Orange Empire Conference in Softball, with both teams fighting to be crowned this year’s OEC Champion.
The Hornets set the tone early for game one.
Fullerton’s starting pitcher Jessica Lopez pitched to contact in the first inning, as Cypress’ first two batters fouled out and grounded out.
Cypress’ Alyssa Huerta reached first on a fielding error, but Paige Shafer flew out to the left-field to put a zero on the board for the Chargers in the top of the first.
The Hornets got on the board early in the bottom of the first.
With one out at the time, second baseman Natalie Gonzalez hit a double down the left-field line to get on base.
After two more walks later in the inning, first baseman Madison Pevehouse hit a double to right-center field scoring three runs to take an early lead for the Hornets.
The scoring resumed in the top of the fourth when Cypress’ Alyssa Huerta singled and then stole second base. Emily Adkinson then reached first base on a fielding error in the right field and Alyssa Huerta scored.
Shortstop Camryn Addimando then doubled to left field, scoring another run for Cypress.
The Hornets responded in the bottom of the fourth, starting with a single by Lopez. Dee Ramirez walked to put runners at first and second, and Jocelyn Alcala singled to left field, scoring Lopez.
Miranda Rooney then singled to right field, scoring Ramirez to tack on another run for the Hornets.
Neither team scored in the following innings, so game one ended in favor of the Hornets 5-2.
Lopez returned to the circle to start game two for the Hornets, pitching a 1,2,3 first inning.
The Hornets struggled offensively in the bottom of the first, going down 1,2,3 in order.
Cypress jumped out ahead early in the top of the second.
Paige Shafer led off the inning with a successful bunt for a single, followed by another single by Emily Adkinson.
The third Charger batter in the inning, Camryn Addimando singled to center field, scoring Shafer and putting the Chargers up 1-0.
With no response from the Hornets in the bottom of the second, the Chargers added a second run to their lead in the top of the third, courtesy of Emily Adkinson scoring Paige Shafer, who reached base on a single as well.
The Hornets posted a strong response at the bottom of the third.
Natalie Gonzalez singled and reached second on a fielding error.
Clarissa Hernandez then laid down a sacrifice bunt moving Gonzalez to third.
Then, another Cypress fielding error allowed Madison Ferguson to reach first, while Gonzalez scored putting the first run on the board for Fullerton.
A double to left-center later in the inning scored two more Hornets to put them ahead 3-2 after two innings.
The Chargers responded in a big way in the top of the fourth, scoring five runs including one unearned run due to a Hornet defensive error.
The Hornets showed signs of a comeback in the seventh inning with one run scored but ultimately could not pull off the upset.
Despite the second game loss, the Hornets maintained their spot at the top of the OEC due to their record of 16-4 on the season.
Meanwhile, Cypress sits at second place tied with Santa Ana College, both teams having records of 11-5 on the year.
The Hornets travel to Mt. SAC next Wednesday, May 19 for one game at 6 p.m.