WashU Avoids Elimination with Upset Win at No. 9 Central

WashU Avoids Elimination with Upset Win at No. 9 Central

Pella, Iowa, May 13, 2017 – The Washington University in St. Louis softball team upset No. 9 Central College (Iowa) 2-1 on Saturday to remain alive in the 2017 NCAA Division III Pella Regional in Pella, Iowa.

WashU improved to 27-13 with the win, while Central ended its season with a 32-10 mark. The Bears take on No. 25 Coe College in an elimination game Saturday at 4 p.m.

"We hit the ball hard all day and had some timely hits," said first-year head coach Michelle Venturella. "We are going to keep building off our success."

WashU stranded five runners in the first two innings of play, but got to Central starter Mariah Fritz in the third. Senior Hannah Mehrle reached on an error, and then scored on a double by senior Janet Taylor.

After back-to-back outs, junior Mackenzie Gauden roped an RBI double to right center to push the lead to 2-0. The extra-base hit for Gauden was her second of the year.

Central scored a run in the fourth, and then threatened in the fifth after getting runners at first and third and no out. Junior Anna McKee got the strikeout and a caught stealing on the same play, and then ended the threat with a groundout to short.

McKee (17-4) tossed a complete game allowing four hits and one earned run. She walked one and struck out five.

WashU had eight hits in the win, but committed three errors and left 10 runners on base. Sophomore Taylor Arends was 2-for-4 and McKee was 2-for-3.

BEAR NOTEBOOK: Central leads the all-time series with WashU 12-6 … The Bears are 24-4 when scoring first … The Bears have won a game in 13 of 15 NCAA Tournament appearances … WashU is 4-3 against ranked teams this season.