FOREST GROVE, Ore. – (From Pacific Sports Information) Kiera Melton's two-run single in the bottom of the seventh lifted Pacific to a 10-9 win over Whitworth and a sweep of the Pirates in a Northwest Conference softball doubleheader on Saturday afternoon at Sherman-Larkins Stadium. The Boxers won the opener 7-4.
With the wins, Pacific improved 7-11 overall and 5-5 in NWC games. Whitworth dropped to 3-13, 1-9 NWC. The Boxers and Pirates are scheduled to finish their four-game series on Sunday. First pitch is at noon.
GAME 1 – Pacific 7, Whitworth 4
Whitworth jumped out to an early 3-0 in the opening game's first inning as Chelsey Chamberlain gave up two leadoff hits and three walks. Sami Parr and Sacha Clow hit the singles to open the game, with Parr scoring on a fielder's choice. Clow and Julia Johnson later scored on a pair of bases loaded walks as all nine Pirates' batters came to the plate.
Pacific was not down long, taking back all three runs in the home half of the first. Kaitlyn Shikada reached when she was hit by a pitch and scored from second on Lauren Tuey's single through the left side. Jordan Mittelsdorf followed that with her fourth homer of the season over the left center field wall.
The Boxers doubled things up in the third. Shikada led off with a walk and scored two batters later on Chamberlain's single to right. Mittelsdorf then connected on a double to center field to score pinch-runner Randee Layosa and Ashley Billingsley followed with a long double to center field to plate Mittelsdorf. Chamberlain added one more run with her single in fourth that scored Shikada.
Whitworth went scoreless until the seventh when Johnson led off the frame with a single and scored on a ground out by Jessica Ross.
Chamberlain battled through to earn her third win of the season in the circle, allowing three runs on five hits with five walks and three strikeouts in four innings. Shannon Miller earned her first save, allowing one run on four hits with two strikeouts over the final three innings. Riley Fritz took the loss to Whitworth to fall to 2-8 on the year. She allowed five runs on five hits with a walk and a strikeout in 2.1 innings.
Mittelsdorf went 3 for 3 for the Boxers with a double, a home run, three RBI and two runs. Parr, Clow and Ross all finished with two hits for the Pirates.
GAME 2 – Pacific 10, Whitworth 9
Melton proved the hero for the Boxers in a high-scoring game, capping her 3 for 3 performance with the game-winning single in the bottom of the seventh.
With the Boxers trailing 9-8, Billingsley led off with a single up the middle and Jenny Yano reached when her sacrifice bunt was mishandled by third baseman Heather Hesselgesser. After Nikki King successfully bunted both runners into scoring position, Melton stepped up to knock her third hit of the game up the middle, allowing the Boxers the come-from-behind win.
The rally made a winner of Chloe Hanson, who improved to 4-5 on the season by retiring the side in the top of the seventh, which included a pair of strikeouts. Fritz took her second loss of the day in relief for the Pirates, allowing three runs, two earned, on seven hits with three strikeouts in 3.1innings.
Pacific opened scoring in the first when Chamberlain connected on her third home run of the season, lofting the ball over straightaway center field.
Whitworth then appeared to take control of the game, scoring five runs in a wild third inning. Caylan Haehl opened things with a one-out single and scored two batters late on single to center by Clow. Johnson extended the inning when she reached on an error, which allowed Clow to score from third. Hesselgesser capped the frame with a towering two-run homer down the left field line.
Pacific took all five runs back in the home half of the third. The Boxers saw their first three batters reach base and Billingsley scored a pair with her two-RBI single to right field and Yano added a two-run double to center field to give Pacific back the lead. Melton added the fifth run with her first hit of the game, an opposite field single down the right field line to score Yano.
Whitworth took the lead back with single runs in the fourth and fifth, with Megan Fisher scoring in the fourth on a single by Parr and Johnson clubbing a solo homer to left center field to lead off the fifth. The Pirates parlayed three Pacific errors in the sixth into a pair of runs, with both scoring on a two-RBI double by Jamie Brunner.
The Pacific comeback began in earnest in the sixth when King led off with a triple to right field that rolled to the fence and then scored on a single by Melton.
Jenna Stevens and Billingsley added three hits apiece for the Boxers with Billingsley scoring two runs and batting in two more. Chamberlain went 2 for 3 in the game with two runs and two RBI. Clow's two hits paced the Pirates.