Wildcat Softball Drops Pair to Rival WWU - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Wildcat Softball Drops Pair to Rival WWU

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by CWU Athletics

BELLINGHAM, Wash. – The Central Washington University softball team squared off with archrival Western Washington University Friday afternoon and lost both games of its doubleheader by one run (2-1, 4-3), with game two's loss coming in extra innings on a walk-off single.

The Wildcats now stand with a 15-10 record and an 8-6 mark in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference. With the wins, WWU improves to 15-8, 7-5 in GNAC.

Despite the losses, Central Washington got great pitching performances by each of its starting pitchers, Maria Gau (Woodinville, WA, Woodinville) and Taryn Smith (Olympia, WA, Timberline). Gau pitched in game one and picked up the loss (8-4) despite not allowing an earned run in the contest. Both of the runs that Western Washington scored in its 2-1 victory in game one came in the fourth inning where the Vikings took advantage of a CWU fielding error to gain the advantage. Gau threw all six innings of the contest and allowed six hits and struck out five batters while only walking one.

The Wildcats lone run came in the third inning asa Michaela Hazlett (Purcell, OK, Purcell) led the inning off with a single and eventually scored as freshman Taylor Ferleman (Bellevue, WA, Lake Washington) purposefully got into a run down between first and second base which allowed Hazlett to score before Ferleman was tagged out.

Smith started in the circle in game two and ended up pitching in all nine frames of the extra inning contest that ended in a 4-3 loss. Smith scattered eight hits and four runs while striking out 3 batters.

Central Washington held a 2-0 lead in game two scoring a run in both the first and second innings. Hazlett reached base on a walk in the first inning and then stole second base before scoring on a throwing error by WWU to get CWU on the board. Sammy Morris (Bothell, WA, Bothell) drove in the second run on a RBI single to left centerfield scoring Jordan Zurfluh (Adna, WA, Adna) on the play.

Western Washington used the fifth and sixth innings to match the Wildcats and tied the game at 2-2 heading into the seventh inning. Morris led off the seventh inning with single, and her speed led the Wildcats to an eventual score. On two separate occasions during the inning the Vikings tried to get the lead runner (Morris) out on infield grounders, and each time Morris beat the play with the final hustle play resulting with her crossing home plate to give the Wildcats a 3-2 lead. WWU answered by scoring one run on two hits in the bottom half of the seventh to send the game to extra innings.

Both teams went down in order in the eighth inning, and the Wildcats threatened to score in the top of the ninth as they had runners on first and second with just one out, but the final two batters both flied out to end the inning. Western's leadoff batter, Autumn Isaacson, reached base in the bottom of the ninth inning and proceeded to steal her conference leading 20th base of the season, and the following batter singled up the middle to score Isaacson and give the Vikings the final 4-3 lead.

The scheduled doubleheader at Simon Fraser University tomorrow has been cancelled due to rain and a make-up date is tentatively scheduled for Apr. 9. Next up the Wildcats will travel to California to play Cal State Monterey Bay for a doubleheader on Apr. 2 before competing in the Tournament of Champions in Turlock, CA on Apr. 4-6.

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