Wildcats lose NWC lead to the Lutes

The softball team cheers on senior Jaydee Baxter as she crosses the plate after hitting a home run in the fifth inning against Pacific Lutheran University on March 11 at Del Smith Stadium. Joel Ray/Staff photographer

The Wildcats swung away at the competition on March 10 and 11 at the Del Smith Stadium.

Linfield battled in a doubleheader against Pacific Lutheran University on March 11.

Facing off with the Lutes, the Wildcats met their first loss of the season.

Linfield took a short lead of 3-2 during the first inning.

The Wildcats lost the lead after the second inning when Pacific Lutheran scored three more runs. Inching ahead, the Lutes continued to outscore the Wildcats, beating them 9-5.

“Pacific Lutheran is a good team. They hit the ball pretty well and match up well against us. We had several good games with them last year”, senior Staci Doucette said. “We [know] that they are going to come at us with everything they have.”

Concluding their second game against the Lutes, the Wildcats lost 6-2. Linfield led the second game 2-0 until the seventh inning, when the Lutes scored all six of its runs.

“Our hitting and pitching are both very strong and compliment each other well”, senior Jaydee Baxter said. “Something bigger than that though is our ability to stay level headed. We play a very mental game that is based on failure and our team has the ability to stay mentally tough and find success no matter who is playing well. We find ways to win even in the face of adversity.”

Starting off the weekend, the softball team faced off for a doubleheader with the University of Puget Sound on March 10.

Kicking off the game, the Loggers were first to step up to the plate.

The Wildcats took the second inning by storm, scoring 12 of their 15 runs.

The frenzy of runs started when Baxter hit the ball into centerfield, bringing in senior Jordan Mixsell and freshman Kate Hasty.

The scoring continued as the Wildcats cycled through the lineup.

Junior Karleigh Prestianni hit the only home run of the game, bringing in Doucette and herself for two more runs.

The Loggers scored their first and only run during the fourth inning.

Earning the last few runs of the game during the fourth inning, freshman McKenna Spieth brought in fellow freshman Lisa Bennett.

Senior Emilee Lepp hit a triple, bringing in Spieth for another run.

The final run of the game was scored by Lepp, off a single by freshman Lisa Yamamoto.

This ended the game 15-1 after the Loggers’ fifth inning at bat.

For Linfield’s second game of the day, the Wildcats pulled ahead early in the game and scored six runs in the first inning.

The game ended in the fifth inning with a score of 8-0.

The Wildcats are second in the Northwest Conference standings, behind Pacific Lutheran.

The team will play against Pacific University on March 17 in Forest Grove, Ore., and then they will play against Lewis & Clark University on March 18 at home in Del Smith Stadium.

Kaylyn Peterson
/Sports editor
Kaylyn Peterson can be reached at linfieldreviewsports@gmail.com.

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