Willamette Finishes Off Series Sweep of Whitworth

SALEM, Ore. – Whitworth's bats never could get untracked against Willamette pitching in 3-2 and 11-3 softball loses on Saturday at the Willamette Softball Field.

The Pirates fell to 17-19 overall and 10-14 in the NWC while the Bearcats improved to 18-8, 17-4.  Whitworth will close out the regular season next weekend at George Fox.  If the Bucs sweep the Bruins Whitworth can still claim the fourth NWC playoff spot.

Game 1 – Willamette 3, Whitworth 2
The Bearcats made three first inning runs stand up and withstood Julia Johnson's two-run homer to win Saturday's opener.

Heather Winslow and Susie Krewer sandwiched RBI singles around Mica Romero's run-scoring double in the Bearcats' first-inning rally.

Whitworth starting pitcher Taylor Gilbert allowed only a single hit the rest of the way.  She finished the game with a five-hitter, striking out two and walking one but still falling to 8-4 this season.

Julia Johnson drilled her third home run of the season to center field in the top of the fourth inning, getting the Bucs within a run. 

Whitworth had a chance to tie the game in the seventh inning when pinch-runner Makenzie Hope reached third base with one out.  But she was caught at home by Romero's throw from shortstop on Sami Parr's ground ball.

Alex Watilo (12-3) went the distance for Willamette, allowing one earned run on five hits.

Game 2 – Willamette 11, Whitworth 3 (5 innings)
The Bearcats scored in every inning to win the series finale in five innings on the NCAA's eight-run rule.

Theresa Martin, Mica Romero and Erin Norris each drove in a pair of runs for Willamette.  The Bearcats drove in three runs each in the third and fourth innings to break the game open.  The game ended on a two-run double by Norris in the fifth, the third of three straight hits to open the inning.

Sacha Clow hit her third home run of the season in the top of the third inning to get the Pirates on the board.  Whitney Byrom drew a bases-loaded walk in the fifth inning for Whitworth's third run.

Riley Fritz (9-11) started the game and allowed seven earned runs on 12 hits in 3.1 innings.

Hayley Glantz (6-5) went the entire way for Willamette.