Game 2 Box Score
FOREST GROVE, Ore. – Big scoring bursts were the order of the day for the Linfield Wildcats during a Northwest Conference doubleheader sweep of the Pacific Boxers Saturday afternoon at Sherman/Larkins Stadium.
Linfield won the opener 7-2, then cut loose for a 10-1, 5-inning romp in the nightcap.
McKenna Spieth (Sr., Vancouver, Wash.) totaled three hits, drove in three runs and scored three times herself to lead Linfield offensively. Erin Carson (Sr., Camas, Wash.) smacked three hits and drove in a couple of runs as 11th-ranked Linfield ran its season and conference record to a spotless 14-0.
The two teams also played twice Wednesday night in McMinnville with Linfield winning both times. Saturday's bookend wins capped a four-game season sweep by the Wildcats over the rival Boxers (11-5, 6-5 NWC), who entered the week with just a single loss.
GAME 1: Linfield 7, Pacific 2
Ashley Garcia and Lisa Yamamoto (Sr., Carson City, Nev.) both had two hits for the Wildcats, who piled on four runs in the first inning and another three in the third to take firm command.
Racking up seven strikeouts in six innings, Wildcats ace Karina Paavola pitched her eighth win of the season against no losses. The senior righthander allowed three hits and both of Pacific's runs before turning the game over to Montana McNealy (Sr., Aloha, Ore.) in the seventh.
Kylee Oshiro totaled two of Pacific's five hits. Boxers starter Allie Sims (7-2) was saddled with the loss. Sims gave up six hits, five earned runs and a walk while striking out just two Wildcats.
GAME 2: Linfield 10, Pacific 1, 5 innings
Leadoff hitter Becca Moen opened the game with a triple off of Wildcats starter Shelby VandeBergh, then scored on a single by Rachel Roberts on the very next at-bat.
Linfield erased the deficit in a big way in the fourth, plating seven runs. Carson, Erin Kinney (So., Bainbridge Island, Wash.), Spieth and Garcia each took turns driving home runs. Danielle Duman (So., Eugene, Ore.) sent the Boxers reeling with a bases-clearing double to left-center field that scored three more.
In the fifth, the Wildcats made certain the game would end by virtue of the eight-run rule. Spieth pounded a RBI single and Katy Brosig singled through the middle of the infield to score Middelstadt and Spieth for a 10-1 Wildcats advantage.
McNealy closed out the Boxers with a pair of strikeouts in the bottom of the fifth. VandeBergh collected the win to improve to 3-0. Sara Aasness (4-3) took the loss.
‘CAT SCRATCH: Middlestadt recorded two stolen bases Saturday to give her 67 thefts for her career and elevating her past graduated All-American Jenny Marshall to No. 4 on Linfield's all-time list. . . Linfield outscored Pacific 25-9 in the four games, despite holding just a narrow 30-24 advantage in total hits. . . Linfield pitchers Paavola, VandeBergh and McNealy combined for 29 strikeouts against the Boxers.
AHEAD: Linfield hosts George Fox in the final NWC doubleheader Sunday. Originally scheduled for noon, the first game will now begin at 11 a.m. in expectation of late afternoon rain. The Wildcats then embark on a 12-game spring break trip, March 20-26, across the state of Texas.