(Walnut, CA) Mt. SAC sophomore pitcher Briana Wheeler pitched a complete-game no-hitter to give the Mounties their third consecutive shutout, defeating Cerritos College, 5-0, in a Thursday afternoon nonconference contest.
Wheeler (2-0) allowed only three base runners (2 walks, error) in the seven-inning gem, striking out 11 Falcons in the process. In her three appearances this season, she has fanned 21 batters in 16 innings.
Mt. SAC, which has won the last three games in a row and scored 22 runs, improved to 3-1 on the season.
"I think we gave our all in the game," Wheeler said. "I am working on my change-up this season, I went from a week or two ago of not having one to having one that's working pretty good."
"With the past two weeks having all of our games being rained out, being able to be out here with the team is just awesome."
Mt. SAC, ranked No. 1 in the state to start the season, banged out six hits and scored all five runs in the first three innings.
With two outs in the first inning, first baseman Vicky Gutierrez (2 for 3, R, RBI) started things off with a "no-doubter" line-drive, solo homerun to center field for the 1-0 lead.
"That was my first of the season and it felt good," said Gutierrez, who connected with a big, three-run homerun in last years' championship game. "It's good to be back and hopefully there is more to come if I just stay with my mechanics."
The Mounties took a 4-0 lead in the second inning on no hits and three errors by the Falcons (2-3).
With two outs, second baseman Gabby Estrada reached first on an error, which was followed by center fielder Ally Longtree and left fielder Candace Haliburton both being hit by the pitch to load the bases.
Right fielder Caitlyn Felina reached on the second error of the inning, scoring Longtree and Estrada.
After Gutierrez singled to load the bases for the second time in the inning, designated player Ciara Granado (1-2, RBI) walked to score Haliburton.
The Mounties added one more run in the third, for the 5-0 lead, after shortstop Jessika Trujillo (1-3, R) opened the inning with a double to left. Catcher Adriana Ramirez (1-3) singled Trujillo to third and three batters later, Trujillo scored after Haliburton reached first on a fielder's choice.
"It's fun to be out here again," said Rojas, "I know we're way better than five runs, but it's early in the season and they did a good job."
"Brianna did a phenomenal job today with the no-hitter and the girls did a good job defensively. When you haven't played in ten days, you get out of rhythm but, overall it's good to be back."
Mt. SAC plays a make-up game Saturday (2/9) where they will host Santa Ana at 2:00 pm.
Follow Mt. SAC Softball on twitter @mtsac_softball
For additional information, please contact the Mt. SAC Sports Information Office at 909.274.4630.