Wildcats fall to Irish, tie 49ers on Opening Day
Courtesy: Justin Johnson - Weber State Athletic Communications  
Release: Wednesday 02/10/2017
Courtesy: Robert Casey
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Sophomore Sadie Blacker hit her first career grand slam against Long Beach State.

LONG BEACH, Calif. – Opening day didn’t yield the Wildcats a win, but that didn’t stop it from being a success.

The Weber State University softball team went 0-1-1 on its first day, narrowly falling 2-1 to No. 22 Notre Dame in its opener after holding the Irish scoreless for 6.1 innings, and then rallied to finish in a 6-6 tie with Long Beach State after rain and darkness conspired to prevent a winner.

Against the 49ers, the Wildcats fell behind 4-0 at the end of the fifth inning, but stormed back behind a grand slam from sophomore pinch hitter Sadie Blacker that tied it at 4-4.

Long Beach State (2-1-1) pulled back ahead in the bottom of the sixth, but the Wildcats’ offense wasn’t done yet.

After senior Sara Hingsberger reached in the seventh, junior Rae Gall blasted a two-run shot to give the Wildcats a 6-5 lead heading into the bottom of the inning.

The 49ers rallied to tie up with a two-out, bases-single up the middle, and would have scored the go-ahead run if not for a game-saving throw from freshman centerfielder Courtney Pestka to home plate to get the final out.

The opening game against the Irish turned into a pitcher’s duel until the Wildcats finally broke through when Gall hit an RBI single to center field that scored freshman shortstop Sydney White and gave WSU a 1-0 lead.

Notre Dame tied it up on a one-out RBI single through the right side, and scored the walk-off run on a two-out, bases-loaded wild pitch for the 2-1 win.

Weber State will be back in action on Saturday, shifting north to Los Angeles where the Wildcats will face No. 8 UCLA in a twinbill, beginning at 12:30 p.m. MT (11:30 a.m. Pacific), with the second game set for approximately 3 p.m.

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