#OregonSoftball: Ducks Sweep Cal, Named No. 2 Seed at NCAA Regional

BERKELEY – Oregon’s offense got off to a fast start before the pitching locked it down the rest of the way in a 3-1 win over California to complete a four-game road sweep of the Bears.

The Ducks jumped ahead early on once again in the final game, scoring in the top of the first to go up 1-0. After Hanna Delgado doubled with one out, Rachel Cid cashed her in two batters later with a two-out RBI single to left field. Cal answered with a run in the bottom half to make it 1-1.

Oregon reclaimed the lead with a pair of runs in the second, capitalizing on some Cal mistakes to take a 3-1 lead. Shaye Bowden reached on an error to lead off before Maddie Hopper doubled and Alyssa Brito was hit by a pitch to load the bases with no outs. Deijah Pangilinan drew a bases loaded walk to force home Bowden before Vallery Wong plated Hopper with a sacrifice fly to right field.

The Oregon bats went quiet the rest of the way, but the pitching staff shut down the Cal offense over the final six innings. Samaria Diaz relieved starter Brooke Yanez in the fourth and worked three scoreless innings before Raegan Breedlove came in to pick up the save in the seventh, getting a ground-ball double play to end the game.

Oregon is back in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2018, and will head to Austin, Texas as the No. 2 seed in that regional, opening play Friday against Texas State.

The Ducks will open play against the Bobcats on Friday at 4:30 p.m. PT on ESPN3. The other two teams in the regional are host and No. 1 seed in the regional, Texas, and St. Francis. This will be Oregon’s 21st all-time appearance in an NCAA Regional.

“I’m thrilled that we’re in the postseason,” said head coach Melyssa Lombardi. “With postseason, you hear your name called and from there, whether you’re hosting or not hosting, you get ready and prepare. It’s all about the postseason.”
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Oregon finished the regular season 37-15 overall and 14-10 in Pac-12 play, finishing in third place in the loaded conference.

The Ducks landed six players on the Pac-12 All-Conference Team, highlighted by three first-teamers, while a pair earned all-freshman honors and two more were named to the all-defensive team following the release of the conference’s postseason awards Sunday.

It also marks the ninth time in the last 10 seasons that the Ducks have finished third place or better in the league. Oregon was the only team in the Pac-12 to play its entire 24-game conference slate as originally scheduled, while playing an additional 12 games against league foes that counted as nonconference matchups.

Oregon heads into the 2021 NCAA Tournament with a 74-47 all-time record in postseason play and have not lost a game in the regional round since 2008 – a streak of 27 straight games that covers the last nine tournament appearances.