SOU softball team fights back, settles for split

After an 8-0 win in five innings, a Concordia comeback in the nightcap collapsed in the seventh as Southern Oregon rallied for an 8-7 win to pull out a doubleheaders split in Cascade Collegiate Conference softball action Saturday at Portland's Delta Park.

With the results, the Raiders finished the day 4-13 overall and 3-3 in league play, while Concordia moved to 9-8 on the year and 4-2 in the CCC.

The Cavaliers cruised in the opener after posting six unearned runs in the first inning via five hits and three errors. After sending 12 batters to the plate in the first, CU added a run in the second with an RBI single to center by Tina Garcia.

Concordia nearly supplied its eighth run in the fourth with Shayna Ostlund stranded at third, but the team came back in the fifth with right fielder Kari Mabe belting a double to right-center to lead off the inning.

After a Nicole Illias sacrifice, CU cut garnered the early win with a game-ending single through the right side by Denise Benedict. Working with the lead, CU starter Danielle Pulfrey cruised to a one-hit shutout. The sophomore struck out six Raider batters and yielded three walks.

In the second game, the Cavs once again jumped out to an early lead with three runs in the bottom of the first with the aid of three hits and two Raider errors.

SOU fought back with a solo run in the fourth and would take the lead in the next stanza by plating four runners off three walks, two hits and a Cavalier error.

In an immediate response, CU put three more on the board in the bottom of the fifth to regain the lead at 6-5 and an RBI single by Cristofaro gave the Cavs a two-run gap in the sixth.

Trying to add some additional insurance runs in the inning, CU was taken out of the inning by heads up fielding by the Raiders. With two outs and runners at first and third, SOU pitcher Joelle Riekerman gobbled a comeback grounder off the bat of Concordia's Ostlund and fired home to Sara Stenson for the tag out. From there, Stenson fired to the shortstop to begin a rundown of the Cavalier runner, and a quick throw to third provided the unconventional double play to end the threat.

The play would be rewarded as the Raiders fought back for three runs in the seventh for the fourth and final lead change of the game. Riekeman provided the key hit in SOU's game-winning rally &

a bases-loaded single to right that brought home two runs.

Garcia led off the seventh with a single but would remain at first as Riekerman would send down the next three batters to end the game and preserve the split.

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