Nothing like a little five-run noise to signal the start of a new softball season.
Fresno State broke open what was a two-run game with five in the fifth, a rally that included senior Michelle Solomon’s second home run of the game — a two-out, two-run blast — as the Bulldogs beat Fordham 8-0 in six innings Friday night to begin the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe, Ariz.
For good measure, Fresno State did it again later Friday with five runs in the first inning against Portland State, eventually winning that game 6-1. The Vikings committed three errors in the opening inning and Fresno State was up 6-0 by the third.
Rams mistakes helped the Bulldogs along in the first game, too, with a one-out error preceding Solomon’s homer and another error and wild pitch sandwiching junior Alyssa Villalpando’s RBI triple.
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Solomon’s solo shot in the third had given the Bulldogs a 2-0 lead. She hit six home runs in 153 at-bats as a junior, including two at home against Sacramento State on Feb. 14 for her first multi-homer game. Junior Paige Gumz’s infield single scored Brenna Moss in the first.
Jill Compton, a junior right-hander and returning 20-game winner, pitched four one-hit innings for Fresno State, which was to face Ole Miss and Cal State Northridge on Saturday and the University of San Diego on Sunday.
Compton walked three and struck out three. Junior right-hander Hannah Harris allowed one hit in her two innings.
Against Portland State, Compton went three innings, junior Kiley Shae Aldridge got one out and Harris picked up the other 3.2 innings in a combined five-hitter.
Senior Taylor Green drove in three with her bases-clearing double in the first.
Tennis team exacts revenge vs. K-State
Fresno State avenged its only home loss under third-year coach Ryan Stotland, beating No. 66 Kansas State 5-2 at Wathen Tennis Center. The Bulldogs reversed the score of a match between the teams on March 18, 2013.
Sisters Maiar and Rana Sherif Ahmed improved to 7-1 as a tandem with a 6-1 victory over Iva Bago and Amina St. Hill that clinched the doubles point for Fresno State (3-2). Both won in singles, as did No. 47 Sophie Watts, who rallied from down 5-2 in the first set to defeat Palma Juhasz 7-5, 6-3 for the clinching point. Anne Susdorf won in a 10-7 tiebreaker for the Bulldogs.
“We knew we had to get it in before the rain came so we had to be prepared and the girls came out with great energy,” Stotland said. “Doubles was really, really good to say the least, and in singles our top three came out and did a great job finishing.”
Fresno State is scheduled to host San Francisco this weekend, though the day and time will be determined based on the weather.
Track and field
Dezirae Johnson of Fresno State was third in the women’s 400 in 55.93 and Je’Nia Sears also grabbed the bronze in the long jump at 20 feet, 41/4 inches among Bulldogs athletes taking part in the New Mexico Collegiate.
Kyra Johnson (56.88) was 10th and Njeri Omawahleh (57.07) 12th in a 400 race won by Ka’Lynn Jupiter of Louisiana State in 55.59. Nataliyah Friar of LSU won the long jump at 20-5.
The meet is at the Albuquerque Convention Center, also set to host the Mountain West Indoor Championships later this month.