TEMPE, Ariz. (Feb. 11) – Seattle University softball went toe-to-toe with No. 9 Oregon Saturday morning, dropping a 4-2 contest at the Kajikawa Classic. The Redhawks posted nine hits and held the Ducks scoreless for the final six innings of the non-conference setback.
"We fought back after a rough start," said Coach Geoff Hirai. "We showed a lot of heart and resiliency in sticking with a nationally-ranked team."
Oregon, the four-time defending Pac-12 champions, struck for four runs in the bottom of the first inning. From there, SU put a scare into the Ducks, pushing them into the last frame.
Maddy Kristjanson doubled to lead off the top of the second. Susanne Morris and Kaylee Ree followed with singles, bringing in Kristjanson to score. A Kayla Gonzales base hit loaded the bases with no one out. After a fielder’s choice that cut down the lead runner, Paige Bouska singled in Ree, making it 4-2 and chasing Oregon starter Miranda Elish. The Redhawks were unable to push any more runs across, ending the threat with two runs.
Seattle U starting pitcher Andie Larkins allowed just one hit in the next two frames, and in the top of the fourth, Ree led off with a bunt single. Bouska tallied a base hit with two outs, but Oregon (5-0) escaped with a strike out to keep the score 4-2.
Larkins continued to baffle the Duck lineup, giving up only a pair of singles and a walk through six innings. Ree walked to start the sixth, and then Megan Ottino singled with one out. After the runners advanced on a passed ball, Oregon came up with another strikeout to get out of the jam.
After another perfect frame from Larkins, SU had a final chance to tie the game in the seventh. It was unable to get the tying run to the plate, though, as the Ducks claimed the victory.
Ree went 2-2 with a walk, a run, and an RBI. Bouska had two hits and an RBI. Larkins threw six innings, allowing six hits and striking out five hitters.
Seattle U (0-3) wraps up its weekend at the Kajikawa Classic on Sunday. It faces Western Michigan at 8 a.m. (Pacific) and then closes with a contest against San Diego at 10:45 a.m. (Pacific).