LOS ANGELES – Senior righthander Sierra Hyland struck out 10 combined hitters during the Cal Poly softball program's Sunday doubleheader sweep to match the all-time Big West Conference career strikeout record as the Mustangs closed the Loyola Marymount Tournament and pushed their winning streak to eight straight games by defeating Sacramento State (7-2) and Dartmouth (2-1).
Hyland (13-5), who threw seven and one-third innings of relief Sunday, struck out four Sacramento State hitters and six Dartmouth hitters to further her career total to 846 and equalize UC Santa Barbara's Jennifer Davis (2004-07) for the all-time Big West Conference lead.
Hyland's next opportunity to set a new Big West strikeout record will come on Saturday, March 25 as the Mustangs (23-7) close the non-conference portion of their schedule with a 1 p.m. home doubleheader versus CSU Bakersfield.
During Sunday's opening victory versus Sacramento State (10-13-1), the Mustangs – winners of 17 of their last 18 games – provided starting righthander Lindsey Chalmers (9-2) a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning and the junior retired six of the first seven hitters she faced before stranding the bases loaded to close the third.
The Hornets tied the matchup in the fourth through a two-run homer from first baseman Jessica Ravetti. Cal Poly, however, regained the lead with a four-run sixth inning comprised of run-scoring hits from senior second baseman Ashley Tornio and junior shortstop Chelsea Convissar and a two-RBI single by Hyland.
In the circle, Chalmers was lifted after five innings for Hyland, who kept the Hornets hitless during the final two innings.
During Saturday's second victory versus Dartmouth (0-12-1), Cal Poly was held to one hit through the opening five innings before Sandoval singled to lead off the sixth. Two batters later, junior third baseman Stephanie Heyward belted her first home run of the year to provide the Mustangs the lead.
Hyland relieved starting freshman righthander Steffi Best with two down in the second inning and proceeded to retire 10 successive Dartmouth hitters. The Big Green secured their lone run in the sixth with right fielder Micah Schroder following shortstop Calista Almer's leadoff double with a sacrifice fly, but Hyland allowed just one more hit to close the victory.
Hyland threw 75.3 percent of her 73 pitches for strikes versus Dartmouth while Heyward produced two hits.