RIVERSIDE, Calif. --- California Baptist University secured an automatic bid to the NCCAA National Tournament, sweeping Hope International Tuesday to win the West Regional title.
The Lancers won 6-0 in the opener, getting a no-hitter from Emma Holden and then Tory Ferreira came in and tossed a three-hit 9-0 shutout to close things out in the late game.
It was the second no-hitter in as many days for Holden, who has now thrown three in the last seven days. The CBU senior ace tossed a five-inning no-hitter last week against BYU-Hawaii and then again yesterday in the clinching game for the PacWest title against Dominican.
"I guess I was just saving the best for last," said Holden, who has a 0.80 ERA, 79 strikeouts and has given up 20 hits in her last seven starts. "Ever since senior day against Grand Canyon I've felt great. I think I just realized it was the end of the season and I really wanted to finish my last year strong. It's been amazing."
Holden went the full seven innings in the opener, walking two batters and striking out 11. She moves to 23-4 with the win.
Kailey Willingham doubled in two more runs in the third and then drove in another in the fifth as part yet another two-run inning.
"I really think we are playing our best softball of the year right now," said CBU Head Coach Bill Baber. "We got phenomenal pitching, great hitting and that's coming from a team that has played 11 games in the last week. They're giving it their all right now. Emma was amazing, she's on fire right now, and then you follow that up with Tory coming in and shutting them down as well. The two of them are a luxury not many teams have."
Ferreira allowed three hits and no runs in her six-inning start Tuesday, striking out five batters and walking none. Ferreira didn't allow a runner past first base until stranding a runner on second for the final out of the game. She is now 22-2 this year.
Gorham hit her team leading 15th homer of the season in the late game, breaking a scoreless tie in the third inning with a three-run shot.
CBU would add four runs in the fifth and two more in the sixth to get the six-inning win.
Gorham was a triple shy of the cycle, going 3 for 4 in the game with 3 RBI and two runs scored.
"This has been a great season and now to be able to go back to Virginia and show we can compete with everyone there too is exciting," said Baber.
The Lancers move their season record to 45-6 and will represent the West region at the NCCAA National tournament, May 10-12 in Botetourt County, Va.
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