Bearcats Start NWC Play With Two Wins

By Sara Brooks, Assistant Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6219

TACOMA, WASH. -- The Willamette University softball team opened Northwest Conference play with a pair of victories over the University of Puget Sound on Saturday, March 6. Willamette won the first game, 4-3. In the second game, the Bearcats plated six runs in the fourth inning on their way to an 11-4 victory.

In the first game, Willamette scored two runs in the top of third. Mica Romero (So., SS, Woodland, CA/Woodland Christian HS) had an RBI triple in the inning. Jessica Barry (So., OF, Cupertino, CA/University of Nevada-Las Vegas) scored on Romero's hit.

After giving up two runs in the bottom of the third to tie the score at 3-3, Willamette battled back in the fourth. The Bearcats got back-to-back singles from Barry and Yvonne Drabin (Fr., OF, Fremont, CA/Moreau Catholic HS). With one out, Romero smacked a double to score Barry and take a 4-3 lead.

Alex Watilo (So., P, New Castle, CA/Del Oro HS) earned the win for Willamette. Watilo pitched a complete game, striking out six and giving up three runs, all earned. She did not allow a walk in the game.

The Bearcats accumulated nine hits off of Puget Sound pitcher Auriel Sperberg. Sperberg allowed four runs, three of them earned, in the loss.

Barry and Romero each finished the game with two hits apiece. Romero added two RBIs and one run while Barry scored twice. Kelli Snyder (Fr., C, Longview, WA/Kelso HS) added two hits.

In the second game, Willamette bounced back from a rough start. After giving up three runs in the first inning, the Bearcats stormed back to defeat the Loggers, 11-4. Willamette scored six runs in the fourth to grab an 8-3 lead and never looked back. WU compiled 20 hits during the game.

Romero led the way for the Bearcats with four hits, three RBIs and a run. Bri Compton (Jr., P, Kalispell, MT/Wenatchee CC) tagged four hits of her own. Compton added two RBIs and two runs. Barry and Sierra Lessel (So., OF, Eugene, OR/Winston Churchill HS) had two hits apiece. Lessel added an RBI and three runs while Barry added two runs.

Compton earned the win in the circle for WU. She pitched a complete game, striking out six. She allowed four runs (three earned) and nine hits during the game.

Willamette moves to 5-1 overall and 2-0 in the NWC. Puget Sound drops to 0-6 overall and 0-2 in the NWC. The teams will meet again tomorrow for another set of games.

Willamette University 4
University of Puget Sound 3
Willamette University 11
University of Puget Sound 4