By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Taiana Creekmur (Fr., C, Honolulu, HI/St. Francis HS) of Willamette University hit a two-run double to left center with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning to send the Bearcats to a 5-4 victory over George Fox University in the second game of a doubleheader on Sunday, April 9. George Fox scored four runs in the fifth inning of the first game on its way to a 7-2 win.
By splitting the Northwest Conference doubleheader at the WU Softball Field, the Bearcats moved to 12-15 overall, 11-11 in the NWC. George Fox went to 18-14 on the season, 14-12 in the NWC.
Second Game Features Four Lead Changes as Bearcat Win
The Bruins and the Bearcats battled through four lead changed in the second game. Each team finished the game with eight hits.
Willamette took a 1-0 lead in the first inning. With two outs, Darian Gibson (So., LF, Newport Beach, CA/Calvary HS) singled down the left field line. Asaro hit a single that handcuffed GFU pitcher Abbie Bergerson. Glasgo sent a single down the right field line to score Gibson from second.
GFU surged in front 2-1 in the second inning. Alyssa Gonzalez was hit by a pitch with two outs. Roni Braun singled to left center. Savannah Vargas drove in both runners with a double to left.
The Bearcats added a run in the bottom of the second and one run in the third for a 3-2 advantage.
In the second, Kea Gier (Fr., 3B, Kaneohe, HI/Iolani School) blasted a leadoff double, went to third on a sacrifice bunt by Steffany Dunn (Sr., RF, Colfax, CA/Colfax HS), and scored on a wild pitch. Alex Shields (Sr., C, Lake Forest, CA/El Toro HS) doubled to open the third inning. She reached third on a wild pitch, stayed at third on a ground out by Gibson, and scored when Asaro grounded out.
George Fox regained the lead at 4-3 with two runs in the top of the sixth. Braun tied the game with two outs on a solo home run to left field. It was her third homer in the four-game series. A double by Vargas and an RBI single by Rebecca Pridmore moved the Bruins in front.
The Bearcats completed the scoreboard's roller-coaster ride with two runs in their final at bat.
Gibson reached base to start the inning when she hit a ball that forced Pridmore to charge in from shortstop. Pridmore misplayed the ball for an error. Asaro then went to first on a fielder's choice, but Gibson was thrown out at second on the play.
Glasgo hit a sharp ball toward shortstop that eluded Pridmore for the second error of the inning. Asaro went to third on the play. Glasgo stole second. After GFU pitcher Madison Sorensen recorded a strikeout for the second out, Creekmur went to the plate as a pinch-hitter. On the fourth pitch, she doubled to left center, proudly reaching second as Asaro and Glasgo scored.
In addition to scoring the winning run, Glasgo earned the pitching win over the final 1 1/3 innings. She also was 2 for 3 at the plate with an RBI. Creekmur and Glasgo were two of four Bearcats with a double during the game. Also hitting a double were Shields and Gier.
For GFU, Braun was 2 for 3 with a homer, two runs and an RBI. Vargas was 2 for 2 with a double and two RBIs. Annie Veatch also earned a double for the Bruins.
Sorensen Shuts Down WU over Final Six Innings in Opener
In the first game, Sorensen thew all seven innings. After allowing two runs on four hits in the first inning, she gave up no runs and three hits the rest of the way. Meanwhile, the Bruins rallied with seven unanswered runs for a 7-2 victory.
Just three of GFU's runs were earned, as the Bearcats committed five errors. Three of the errors were in the fifth inning, when the Bruins added four runs to a 3-2 lead. Brooke Yasuda singled to start the inning. An error at third base allowed Veatch to reach first and second, as Yasuda went to third. A ground out by Allison Meyer drove in Yasuda, and a single by Aaliyah Kautz brought home pinch-runner Ashley Bunce.
After Braun flied out, pinch-runner Tristan Cozo stole second and went to third on a throwing error. An error in center field allowed Vargas to reach first and second, while Cozo scored. Gonzalez singled to send Vargas across the plate. Glasgo entered the circle and forced a pop-up to end the inning.
Earlier, Willamette's success in the first inning started with a leadoff single by Miki Takara (Fr., 2B, Pearl City, HI/Maryknoll HS). She went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Shields and scored on a single by Gibson. Asaro and Creekmur followed with back-to-back singles, allowing Gibson to round the bases.
The Bruins registered 10 hits in the game. Gonzalez was 3 for 4 with a double, a run and two RBIs. Kautz was 2 for 4, scored once and drove in one run. Morgan Penn (Fr., P/1B, Beaverton, OR/Southridge HS) of Willamette was 2 for 3 wtih a double.
Sorensen earned the complete-game win. She fell to 11-7 after receiving the loss in a relief appearance during the second game. Four players pitched for Willamette in the opener. Starting pitcher Reanna Lancaster (So., P, Los Altos, CA/Mountain View HS) went to 1-2 with the loss.
Up Next for the Bearcats
Willamette is scheduled to make up a doubleheader with Linfield College on Wednesday, April 12 at the WU Softball Field. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. (PDT).