Softball Falls to No. 1 Linfield, 17-0, in NCAA Midwest Regional
Pella, Iowa, May 14, 2011 – No. 1 ranked and top-seeded Linfield College scored 10 runs in the first inning en route to a 17-0 victory over No. 4 seed Washington University in St. Louis on Saturday at the 2011 NCAA Division III Midwest Softball Regional held at Central College in Pella, Iowa.
Washington University (32-11-1) takes on No. 16 ranked and sixth-seeded University of Wisconsin-Whitewater on Saturday at 3 p.m. in an elimination game. Linfield (43-2) advances to the finals of the winner’s bracket to take on the winner of No. 2 seed Central College and No. 3 seed Coe College on Sunday at 10 a.m.
Jaydee Baxter singled to left with one out in the first, and then stole second and then moved to third on a throwing error by sophomore catcher Sondra Polonsky. The following pitch by junior starting pitcher Olivia Cook went to the backstop allowing Baxter to score.
The Wildcats were not done scoring in the first. A walk by Emilee Lepp, an error by sophomore second baseman Kathy Peter allowed Staci Doucette to reach first, and a bunt single by Emily Keagbine loaded the bases. Karleigh Prestianni then sent a pitch from Cook over the right field fence to make it 5-0. Linfield added a run following Cook’s third wild pitch of the game.
Linfield added three more runs following a triple off the center field fence by Baxter, pushing the advantage to 9-0. Cook was replaced on the mound by sophomore Kathy Peter with a runner on third with one out. The Bears committed three errors and allowed seven unearned runs in a first inning that lasted 56 minutes.
The Wildcats tacked on three runs on four hits in the bottom of the second inning. Jordan Mixsell, Kayla Hubrich and Baxter each had RBIs in the second inning for Linfield. Washington U. loaded the bases in the top of the fourth inning with three walks, but Claire Velaski struck out Polonsky looking on a 2-2 pitch.
Lepp added a solo home run for Linfield in the bottom of the fourth inning, her NCAA Division III record 29th of the season.
Velaski (21-1) picked up the complete-game no-hitter for Linfield, striking out five and walking five. Cook (11-6) took the loss for Washington U. allowing six hits and 10 runs in one inning pitched.
Bear Notebook: Washington University is 22-19 (.537) all-time in the NCAA Tournament … Washington U. and Linfield met in the 2007 NCAA Division III National Championship games in Salem, Va., losing 1-0 and 10-2 … Linfield entered the game ranked second in Division III in batting average (.391), while Washington University was third (.385) … The Bears are 3-6-1 against teams ranked in the NFCA Top-25 Poll.