Riverside Rides Long Ball in Season Opener against Chaffey

Photo by Bobby R. Hester
Photo by Bobby R. Hester

The Tigers relied heavily on the long ball in their 2018 season and were ranked one of the top power hitting teams in the state. The start of this season's campaign was no different as the Riverside City College softball team unloaded offensively in their season opener against the Chaffey College Panthers. Riverside recorded 14 hits with three of them leaving the yard leading to a commanding 9-2 victory.

Riverside wasted no time waking up the bats as freshman third baseman Danielle Lopez launched a two-run blast in the top of the first inning to plate freshman shortstop Karter Williams. However, Chaffey responded with two runs in the bottom half to bring the score to two apiece.

The Tigers were unfazed by the Panthers miniature offensive spark as the etched three more runs in the following two innings. Sophomore second baseman Brianna Ceballos barreled a two-run jack to plate freshman catcher Alicia Rivera in the top of the second inning, backed by an RBI single from sophomore first baseman Jocelyn Ontiveros to grab a 5-2 lead.

After allowing two runs in the first frame, sophomore starter Lorena Fitch settled in nicely in the following four frames by allowing just a pair of hits and striking out four batters. She eventually gave way to freshman reliever Brianna Arroyo in the sixth inning and she struck out four batters and did not allow a single hit.

Riverside added four more insurance runs in the sixth inning as seen in a two-RBI double from Williams and the second two-run homerun from Lopez leading to a 9-2 win.

Lopez was the offensive catalyst by going 3-for-4 with four RBI and three runs scored. Williams followed with a 2-for-4 day with two RBI and two runs scored, while Ceballos went 3-for-4 with two RBI.

Fitch picked up the victory by tossing five innings and fanning five batters. Arroyo was untouchable out of the pen by cucking two scoreless innings and punching out four hitters.

Riverside (1-0) will host the San Bernardino Valley College Wolverines on Wednesday, January 30 at 5 p.m. for their home opener. Follow live stats on www.rccahtletics.com.