Allan Hancock College softball's Myranda Morales delivered a walk-off single to drive in Isabella Partida to complete a thrilling 4-3 come-from-behind win in nine innings over Bakersfield in a battle for first place on Tuesday afternoon. The Bulldogs started the second half of Western State Conference play by erasing a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the seventh inning. Hancock improved to 11-2 in Western State Conference play and 18-8 overall. The Renegades dropped two games back of the Bulldogs, and fell to 9-4 in conference and 13-13 overall.
The Renegades scored single runs in the third and fourth innings to build a 2-0 lead against Hancock and pitcher Bailey Killough. The two teams split a doubleheader to open conference play last month. The Bulldogs trailed 2-0 until the bottom of the sixth inning when Shannon Peterson reached on a Bakersfield error with one out. Leticia Hoobery pinch-ran for Peterson and moved to second on a wild pitch and to third base on a groundball. With two outs, freshman Nakaila Fuggs drove a ball to the gap for a RBI-double to drive in Hoobery for Hancock's first run of the game.
Bakersfield added an insurance run in the top of the seventh to take a 3-1 lead into the bottom of the seventh. The Bulldogs rallied in the home half as Larrissa Ostrander drew a leadoff walk and scored on a RBI-double off the bat of Maggie Dasis to cut the deficit to 3-2. Then with two outs, Killough roped a clutch double to score Dasis with the game-tying run and even the score at 3-3 to send it to extra innings.
Killough shutout the Renegades in the eighth and ninth innings to set the stage for Hancock heroics in the bottom half. Partida led off with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Dasis. Partida then advanced to third on a wild pitch. With no outs, Morales ended the game with a single up the middle allowing Partida to score and the celebration to begin at home plate.
Hancock finished with nine hits, including two from both Fuggs and Partida. Fuggs delivered a double and a triple at the plate. The Bulldogs also drew seven walks from Bakersfield pitcher McKenna Valencia. Partida also walked twice and stole two bases.
Killough went all nine innings in the circle for Hancock. The freshman scattered nine hits and did not issue one walk. She struck out one and allowed three runs, though only one was earned.
The Bulldogs continue their busy week Thursday when they host College of the Canyons at 1 p.m. in a non-conference game.