by Andrew Goodwin | Sports Editor
Whitworth softball made their only home games of the year count this weekend. The Bucs extended their spring break winning streak to 11 games with a series sweep over the Puget Sound Loggers.
The Pirates defeated the Loggers in the first three games: 9-2, 7-4, and 10-0. The other win was an exhilarating 7-6 comeback victory in the final game of the series.
The Bucs led the final game 3-0 entering the top of the seventh inning, but the Loggers wouldn’t quit. Puget Sound scored six runs in the inning off the Bucs’ best two pitchers, Madi Perez, ‘17, and Ashley Trueblood, ‘19. Freshman Megan Truesdale had to relieve Perez to stop the bleeding and put the game in the hands of her offense.
“I know my defense could back me up,” Truesdale said. “I thought we just needed to get one out, and then we’ll get to go hit and win the game.”
Truesdale turned out to be right as her seniors rolled out big hit after big hit. Myranda Ramirez, ‘17, Shannon Wessel, ‘17, and Michelle Silva, ‘18, rolled singles through the UPS infield to load the bases for senior Tessa Matthews. For her part, Matthews drove in two runs with a single to center field. The hit cut the deficit to 6-5.
The single gave Perez a chance for redemption after giving up the lead in the top of the inning. She took advantage. Perez doubled to the left-center field gap to tie the game, scoring Silva. After a single and a strikeout, the game came down to junior catcher Allie Rude, ‘18. Known as a glove-first catcher, Rude hit a walk-off single to center, scoring Matthews to give Whitworth the sweep.
“[The comeback] wasn’t surprising,” coach Cristal Brown said. “We have come to expect it with this team.”
The win came after the Bucs soundly defeated the Loggers in the first game of the day. Perez tossed a five-inning no-hitter and smashed a grand slam to center to give Whitworth a mercy-rule win in five innings.
On Saturday, the Pirates played just as well. They picked up their first win of the weekend 9-2 thanks to a seven-run fifth inning in which Whitworth earned 13 at-bats. Silva did damage with a two-run double and Matthews singled home an RBI of her own.
Ramirez was the MVP of Saturday’s second game. She drove in six runs for the Pirates with a pair of two-out hits. Ramirez doubled to left field in the second inning and homered to center in the fourth.
“Myranda has a great bat,” Brown said. “That’s why she’s our designated player. It was nice to see her hit with such power.”
Trueblood picked up the win thanks to four and one third innings of three-run pitching. Truesdale gave up just one run in two and two thirds innings to earn the save.
The Bucs hit the road next weekend to take on fourth place PLU on April 8-9. The first games of the two days will be at noon. Nightcaps are scheduled for 2:30 p.m.