Apr 20, 2019

Bruins Clinch Spot In NWC Tournament With Sweep Of Willamette

A Winning Tradition

 
  • Two NCAA Regional Tournament Appearances (2016, 2018)
  • Five Northwest Conference Tournament Appearances (2012, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
  • Six NFCA All-West Region Athletes (One first-team, three second-team, two third-team) 
  • 4 Northwest Conference Coaches of the Year
  • 1 (NFCA) Division III National Pitcher of the Week (Abbie Bergerson, 2015)
  • Two National Top-25 Rankings (2016, 2018)
  • One NAIA Regional Tournament (1994)
  • One NAIA District Championship (1994)
  • One Cascade Conference Championship (1994)
  • 1 NAIA District Coach of the Year
 

By: Jake Bienvenue

SALEM --- The George Fox softball team faced Willamette in the final two games of the regular season on the road on Sunday, earning the sweep with 13-11 and 12-8 victories, respectively.

Recap:

Game One:

The Bruins struck first in game one. With runners on first and second, Roni Braun doubled to right center to allow Ito to reach home, 1-0.

The Bearcats scratched across a pair of runs in the bottom of the first to jump ahead, 2-1.

Savannah Vargas tied the game for George Fox in the top of the second, hitting a home run out of left field.

Again Willamette was able to respond, putting up a run in the bottom of the second to go ahead by one, 3-2.

The Bruins exploded in the top of the third, scratching across five runs to jump ahead of the Bearcats. Aaliyah Kautz batted in Claire Fountain with a single, then, with the bases loaded, Kautz was able to score on a wild pitch. Tanner Higgins batted in Allison Meyer with a bunt, then a two RBI single from Alyssa Gonzalez allowed Higgins and Allisa Yabumoto to reach home, setting the score at 7-4.

The Bearcats scratched one across in the bottom of the fourth to cut the lead to just two, 7-5.

George Fox kept on the gas pedal in the top of the fifth. Vargas hit her second home run of the game to start it off, then Katie Ladd hit a homer of her own to put the Bruins up 9-5.

Willamette kept the game competitive with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth, setting the score at 9-7.

The Bruins came right back with three runs in the top of the sixth. Meyer hit a two RBI home run, then Vargas continued her unstoppable play with yet another homer.

Down 12-7, the Bearcats manage to put up four runs to cut the lead to just one.

Kautz hit a huge home run in the top of the seventh to provide the Bruins with some cushion, and Willamette was unable to close the gap in the bottom of the seventh as George Fox took home a hard-fought win, 13-11.

Game Two:

The Bruins scratched across a pair of runs in the top of the first to kick things off. With the bases loaded, Meyer hit a single to bring Gonzalez in. A walk from Vargas allowed Braun to reach home as the Bruins took a 2-0 lead early on.

The Bearcats woke up in the bottom of the second, putting four runs on the board to jump into the lead, 4-2.

The Bruins retook the lead in the top of the fourth with three runs. With the bases loaded, Fountain grounded out to the shortstop, but Ladd was able to reach home on the play. Kautz was tagged out on her way to first base on the next at-bat, but Gonzalez was able to use the opportunity to run home. Meyer finished it off with an RBI double to set the score at 5-4.

Gonzalez batted Olivia Nelson in with a single in the top of the fifth to give the Bruins a 6-4 lead.

The game continued to go back-and-forth as the Bearcats tied it with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth.

The Bruins kept it up in the top of the sixth. Kyra Thomas scored on a fielder's choice, then Gonzalez hit a two RBI single to cap off a three-run inning, giving the visiting team a 9-6 lead.

The Bearcats would not go away, scratching across a pair of runs to set the score at 9-8 in favor of the Bruins heading into the final inning.

Kautz hit a homer in the top of the seventh to give the Bruins a little space, then Meyer and Vargas both managed to reach home to make it three runs for the visiting team in the top of the seventh. The score was set at 12-8.

The Bearcats were unable to respond in the bottom of the seventh as the Bruins got the sweep with a 12-8 victory.

Game One:

Vargas was the top performer in game one, hitting an unbelievable three homers in just five at-bats. Meyer, Kautz and Gonzalez each batted in a pair of runners in a strong offensive showing.

Game Two:

Gonzalez led the way, batting in four runners while going 5-5 at the plate in the contest. Meyer, Vargas and Kautz each tallied two RBI in the effort.

What It Means:

The Bruins finish the regular season with a record of 25-13 overall and 17-10 in conference play to lock in a spot in the NWC Tournament.