Last Friday the Raider’s softball team played a smoking hot Concordia University team who were riding a winning streak at University field in Ashland.
The pre-softball action found both teams engaged in time killing games, as the scheduled umpires had difficulty driving to Ashland due to weather.
Unfortunately, in the opener the Lady Raider’s could not hold the lead losing 8-6 and failed to challenge in the afternoon’s 6-0 finale, as the Cavaliers stayed hot and ran their winning streak to eight games.
In a familiar theme this season, the team succeeded and failed as Jordyn Kurtz failed or succeeded.
In the first game, Kurtz pitched 5 1/3 innings and 5 of them rocked. However when she faltered, a disorder flew threw the pitching staff like an unexpected curveball and never left.
Head Coach Kim Fritts is thinking hard about her pitching line up with playoffs just around the corner.
“That is a daily conversation with myself that I’m having, pitching wise we have been throwing around different ideas,” Coach Kim Fritts said. “Right now I believe my younger players are playing a little scared and that is typical for young players.”
The offense drove in an early run following a string of illegal pitches for a 1-0 lead in the first inning.
Concordia scored in the third 1-1, the Raiders took a lead 2-1, and the Cavaliers battled back again in the visitor’s half of the fifth for 2-2.
In the bottom of the fifth, Rayna Okimoto started the inning off with a single between the pitchers legs, Kurtz doubled to right centerfield, and Irene Barrantes’s hit chased the Concordia pitcher and helped the Raiders score four runs for a 6-2 lead.
To start the sixth inning Barrentes recorded an out for Kurtz, before a double by the Cav’s Kayla Vickaryous and a couple of errors started a five run inning leaving Concordia leading 7-6. The Cavs scored one more run to round the score to an 8-6 finally.
Okimoto lead the team with 3 hits, score a run, plus drove in Melissa Corn, while Barrentes added 2 hits of her own. Both teams split 9 errors total in the first game.
In the nightcap, the Raider’s found few positive points on either side of the ball, as Concordia scored in the first inning 1-0, and had a huge 5 run third inning, off 5 straight Cavalier hits 6-0.
Lady Raider’s pitching had a good performance, except for the 1 out in that third, which took 3 SOU pitchers to record.
SOU hitter’s recorded 5 hits, found 3 walks and struck out once, while 3 pitchers spent time in the circle during the third inning, leaving little chance to win.
The loss does not end the teamplayoff chase, at 7-7 they are in the heat of the Cascade Conference standings, which allows 3 teams to compete in the postseason.
“I am not concerned we have a good team,” Fritts said. “One of the impressive things is that we started making the adjustments, hitting the ball and hitting it hard, unfortunately we are hitting it to players.”