The SRJC team started its big series with Sierra in the worst imaginable way.    They gave up seven runs in the first inning of game one on their way to an 8-3 loss.
SRJC rebounded from that to win the last two games of the series and take a one game lead in the Big 8 race.
Game 3 started out, well not as bad as Game 1, but started out ominous.  Sierra scored an unearned run in the first to take the early lead.    Bryan Bynum did the shutdown pitching into the ninth inning as SRJC took a 5-2 win.
SRJC is now 22-3-1 on the season and has the one game lead with nine left.
SRJC took the lead for good in the fourth on two out RBI singles by Brett Gillespie and Nico Filice.
Anthony Sequeira took care of most of the rest of the offensive with two run scoring singles.
That was enough for Bynum who raised his record to 4-0.  The best chance for Sierra was right after SRJC had taken the 2-1 lead in the fourth.  Sierra had the bases loaded and two out, but Bynum got out of the inning with a ground out.
Bynum went into the ninth giving up five hits before being relieved by Brandon Hagerla with one out.    Hagerla retired two straight to get his first save of the season.
The race is far from over as they take the one game lead with nine left.   SRJC is next in action on Tuesday when they travel to Cosumnes River to open a three game series.  Cosumnes River is 12-14 on the season overall and 6-9 in Big 8 play.
While that series is going on, Sierra will be meeting San Joaquin Delta who is thinking more than playing the spoiler role.  San Joaquin Delta is 20-7 overall and 10-5 in league play.  The next seven games they meet either Sierra or SRJC.   San Joaquin is ranked No. 3 in Northern California behind SRJC and Delta.
The SRJC Baseball team just came off a huge series.  Next weekend will be the Sonoma State Softball teams turn when they travel to meet Arcata to meet Humboldt State in a four game series.
Humboldt State is ranked No. 9 in the county and is 32-10 overall and 20-4 in league play.  Sonoma State is in second place at 18-6 and ranked No. 16.
We get a preview of the big series when the two teams meet Sunday in the quarterfinals of the Gold Bracket of the TOC Tournament in Turlock.  The game starts at 11 am.  The winner advances to the semi-final game, which would go at 1pm.  The championship game is at 3:15.
SSU advanced by winning two games on Saturday to go to 5-0 for the weekend in the tournament.  Sonoma State outscored opponents 13-1 on Saturday to get the two wins.
In the first game Samantha Lipperd pitched a three hitter to raise her record to 18-3 in a 6-0 win over Simon Fraser.   The game was scoreless going into the sixth when SSU scored two take the lead and then put things away with a 4 run seventh.
The second game was a 7-1 win over Western Oregon.  In the game SSU continues to show they have more than Lipperd on the mound as Amanda Llerena pitched a complete game two hitter.  She also matched her season high of 12 strikeouts to raise her record to 13-5.
Llerena is a freshman and has struck out 114 in 113 on the season.
Sonoma State won three games on Friday, two of them went extra innings.  One was a 7-5 win when Ali Palmermo hit a two run homer for the win in the ninth.  That ended quite a game for Palmermo who had five hits in the game.  She is hitting .413 on the season.
Sonoma State is riding a twelve game winning streak and is 31-8 on the season.
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