Freshman Bailey Killough clubbed a three-run home run and limited one of the state's most potent offenses to two runs in a thrilling 11-2 five-inning win over undefeated Mt. San Antonio College, the No. 2 team in the state, on Saturday afternoon in Santa Maria. The Bulldogs erupted for nine runs in the fourth inning to earn their biggest win in the last two seasons. Mt. SAC had outscored its first 20 opponents by a combined score of 174-26. The Mounties fell to 20-1 on the season, while the Bulldogs finished the day 15-5 overall.
Mt. SAC scored the first run of the game in the third inning to take a 1-0 lead. Hancock battled back in the bottom half when Larrissa Ostrander hit a RBI-double to drive in Nakaila Fuggs to tie it 1-1. Isabella Partida drew a walk and Maggie Dasis lined a single to load the bases with one out. Myranda Morales drove in Ostrander with a RBI-grounder to give Hancock the lead for good at 2-1.
It stayed a one-run game until the home half of the fourth. Sierra Martinez singled, Leticia Hoobery reached on an error, and Nikole Cody walked to load the bases to begin the inning. Ostrander delivered a two-run single to push the lead to 4-1. Partida followed with a RBI-double to score Cody to give the Bulldogs a 5-1 lead. After Dasis was hit by a pitch, Morales hit a groundball that was misplayed by the Mt. SAC shortstop allowing two more runs to score to give the Bulldogs a 7-1 lead. That is when Killough stepped up and clubbed a three-run blast over the wall for her second home run of the season to make it a 10-1 game. Hancock eventually loaded the bases again on a walk, hit by pitch and single when Ostrander drew a bases-loaded walk to force in Hancock's 11th run. The Bulldogs scored nine runs and sent 14 hitters to the plate.
The Bulldogs out-hit the Mounties 8-to-6. Ostrander went 2-for-3 with 4 RBI. Partida went 2-for-3, while Morales finished with 3 RBI.
Killough went 1-for-3 with 3 RBI. She also improved to 10-1 in the circle. The freshman allowed six hits and struck out two in five innings. She allowed two runs, only one of which was earned.
Earlier in the day, Southwestern blanked Hancock 6-0 behind pitcher Yasmine Jameson, who struck out 12 Bulldogs. She allowed just two hits and issued two walks to earn the win. Shannon Peterson took the loss for Hancock after allowing six runs, three of them were earned, and six hits over seven innings. She struck out four.
Mt. SAC blanked Southwestern 5-0 prior to facing the Bulldogs.
The Bulldogs resume thei Western State Conference schedule on Tuesday, March 21, with a doubleheader at Cuesta College. First place Hancock has won eight straight league games and is 8-1 in conference with a one-game lead over second place Bakersfield. The Cougars are 5-4 in league and 10-9 overall.