Bearcats and Pioneers Split NWC Softball Doubleheader

Smith Earns 5 Strikeouts in 8-5 Victory; L&C Wins Second Game 7-1

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

PORTLAND, ORE. -- Freshman pitcher Jade Smith (Chico, CA/Chico HS) struck out five batters, gave up nine hits and did not allow a walk, while throwing all seven innings, as Willamette University defeated Lewis & Clark College, 8-5, in the first game of a Northwest Conference doubleheader on Sunday, April 6. WU used nine hits, five L&C errors and 14 stolen bases to outscore the Pioneers.

Lewis & Clark won the second game, 7-1, as pitcher Kalin Rooney tossed a complete game and allowed six hits. She had three strikeouts and no walks.

Willamette ended the twinbill with a 15-14 overall record, including 11-8 in the NWC. L&C went to 10-20 on the season, 6-15 in the NWC.

The Pioneers scored two runs in the first inning of the opener. With one out, Tiana Rosario singled to left and Hannah Dal Pra followed with a two-run homer. L&C had three hits in the inning, but earned a total of only three hits in the next five innings.

Willamette registered 13 of its 14 stolen bases between the third and seventh innings as the Bearcats plated at least one run in five consecutive frames.

In the third, WU tied the game at 2-2 on two singles and three errors. Steffany Dunn (Fr., INF, Colfax, CA/Colfax HS) singled, and went to second when Alexia Pratt (Fr., OF, Roseville, CA/Woodcreek HS) reached base on an error. A wild pitch advanced both runners, who scored when the third baseman and pitcher committed errors on the play.

The Bearcats surged in front 5-2 with a trio of runs in the top of the fourth. Dunn, Erin Norris (Jr., 3B/C, Salem, OR/South Salem HS) and Pratt each crossed the plate.

In the sixth, Amanda Absher (Jr., C, Elk Grove, CA/Franklin HS) walked with one out. Myranda Ramirez (Fr., OF, Sunnyvale, CA/Homestead HS) pinch-ran for the Bearcats. She stole second and scored on a single by Norris, as WU took a 6-2 lead. Runners were at second and third when the inning ended.

A solo home run by Rosario in the bottom of the fifth allowed L&C to cut the lead to three runs. The Bearcats responded with a run in the sixth and another in the seventh for an 8-3 margin.

Heather Winslow (Jr., 1B, Oregon City, OR/Oregon City HS) was hit by a pitch and later scored on a single by Ashley Pender (So., 2B, Reno, NV/North Valley HS) in the sixth. Norris belted a double and scored in the seventh.

L&C tallied two scores in its last at bat. Ashley Bolick and Rosario singled. A fielder's choice by Dal Pra moved Bolick moved to third, while Rosario was out at second. A groundout allowed Bolick to score, and Dal Pra reached home on a single by Lindsay Yearman. Smith struck out Rooney to end the game.

Smith improved to 10-3 with the win. Madison Hollenbeck, who started the game for L&C, dropped to 6-11.

Norris was 3 for 4 with two runs an an RBI. Jenna King (Jr., OF, Camarillo, CA/Adolfo Camarillo HS) went 2 for 4. Dunn and Pratt each scored two runs.

Rosario finished 3 for 4, scored twice and drove in a run for the Pioneers. Dal Pra went 2 for 4 with two runs and two RBIs. Yearman also recorded two hits.

The Pioneers took charge of the second game with five runs in the second inning for a 5-0 lead.

The first run scored when Hollenback and Yearman began the stanza with back-to-back doubles. One out later, Yearman beat the ball home on a grounder by Bolick. Later, Haley Robinson doubled in two runs, while Rosario drove in one run with a single to right center.

Kayla Rieger (Jr., OF, Anacortes, WA/Anacortes HS) hit a bunt single in the top of the third inning for Willamette. She stole second and went to third on a groundout. Rieger scored on a single by Ramirez. Winslow also singled, but the Bearcats eventually left runners at second and third.

L&C added to its advantage in the fourth, as RBI doubles by Rosario and Dal Pra gave the Pioneers' a 7-1 lead.

Rooney evened her pitching record at 2-2. Willamette starter Victoria Bradshaw (So., P, Discovery Bay, CA/Liberty HS) dropped to 3-5 after pitching 1 2/3 innings. Makayla Hari (Fr., P, Salem, OR/Blanchet Catholic HS) tossed the final 4 1/3 innings and allowed two runs and four hits.

Rosario was 2 for 4 with two RBIs and a run scored for L&C. Hollenbeck went 2 for 3 and scored once. Winslow led the Bearcats with a 2-for-3 performance and went 3 of 6 for the afternoon.

Willamette will host Pacific Lutheran University on Tuesday, April 8, for the continuation of an NWC game suspended on March 8. The game will resume at 4 p.m. (PDT) with the score tied 2-2 in the bottom of the first inning.


Willamette University 8
Lewis & Clark College 5

Lewis & Clark College 7
Willamette University 1

Erin Norris was 4 for 7 with two runs and an RBI during the doubleheader.

Erin Norris was 4 for 7 with two runs and an RBI during the doubleheader.