Tigers Pound Northern Colorado To Advance To The Miken Classic Championship
Playing for a spot in the Miken Classic championship game, the Pacific softball team pounded Northern Colorado, 10-4, to earn its second win over the Bears on Saturday, Feb. 16. The win moved the Tigers to 6-1 on the year and 3-1 at the Classic. The seven-inning contest marked the first time in four games the Tigers played past five innings while at the Miken Classic.
A rough start to the game for the Tigers put Pacific in an early hole as the Bears jumped out front, 3-0, behind a trio of hits and a trio of free passes. All three runs went against freshman Carly Mortensen despite the young hurler allowing just one ball to leave the infield in her first start. Entering the game in relief, senior Nikki Armagost ended the Bears big inning with her first of seven strikeouts.
For the rest of the game, Armagost held the Bears in check, relinquishing just one more run in the top of the fifth as a pair of leadoff walks came back to bite the senior. The run against Armagost was the first earned run of the year charged to the Tigers' ace in 2013 snapping a 22.0 inning streak without giving up an earned run. In relief, Armagost picked up her fourth win of the year and moved her record to a perfect 4-0 in four appearances. In six innings of work, Armagost gave up five hits and walked two while facing 27 batters.
Offensively, the Tigers slowly worked their way back into the game over the first two innings of play as Pacific knotted the contest at 3-3 to get Mortensen off the hook. In the first, the Tigers took advantage of a leadoff walk to senior Megan Hom and an error by the Bears to put a runner in scoring position for Armagost. With a chance to get the Tigers on the board, Armagost delivered an RBI single to center and moved Foglesong to third. One base away from paydirt, Foglesong used a pitch in the dirt to score the second run of the inning and put Pacific just one run back.
An inning later, the Tigers rallied with two outs to grab their third run of the night on an RBI single to center by Foglesong. Foglesong came through with a runner at second after freshman Melanie Habib worked a walk while Hom slapped a single down the third base line.
Pacific would finally take its first lead of the night in the fourth as the Tigers sent nine to the plate and scored three runs to go up 6-3. In the inning Pacific posted four hits and made good use of a pair of Baylor errors to do its damage. After an error began the inning, the Tigers picked up its first hit of the frame from Hom as the senior singled to third while a second error pushed Pacific's runners into scoring position. With a chance to give her team the lead, junior Taylor Petty roped a single through the left-side, plating the first run of the inning. Following closely, the seniors took control as Armagost tagged her second hit of the night, a double off the wall in right to bring home Hom while Amy Moore singled to right to plate Petty. Tacking on three more runs in the fifth, Pacific batted around for the second straight inning to separate themselves from Northern Colorado.
The Tigers tallied four more hits and a pair of walks to put the runs the on the board as freshman Taylor Brink, Hom, Foglesong and freshman Nicole Zapotoczny all singled in the frame. The walks were issued to Armagost and Moore with Moore's coming with the bases loaded after the Bears pitched around Armagost. For good measure Brink led off the sixth with her first career home run as the freshman tattooed the second pitch she saw over the left field wall. The big fly would end Pacific's scoring for the night as the Tigers finished with 10 runs on 15 hits.
Offensively, seven of Pacific's nine starters recorded a hit with six picking up multiple hits against the Bears' pitching. The top of the Tigers order led the way as Hom and Foglesong each tallied three hits while the middle, Armagost, Moore, and Zapotoczny each posted a pair. Not to be outdone, Brink finished her night with two hits as well including her solo home run. The win for the Tigers earned Pacific a spot in the Miken Classic championship game as they will get a second shot at the host Bears of Baylor.
The two teams will meet for the second time on the weekend as the last game of the tournament is scheduled for 9:00 am (PST). Baylor handed Pacific's its only loss of the season on Friday night.