R.A. Long softball coach Jennifer Godinho had a simple outlook after the Lumberjills’ first round loss in the Southwest 2A District Tournament on Friday: homers are killers.
True enough. The power-packed lineup fielded by the WF West Bearcats launched five homers out of 7th Avenue Park on Friday, claiming a 12-2, six-inning win to advance to the semifinals and bring R.A. Long to the brink of elimination.
“You can’t defend home runs,” Godinho said. “Anything else they hit at us we were able to defend. At-bat we got on bases and stuff like that. We didn’t have a lot of strike outs. So super proud of my team. They’re just good.”
The Bearcat barrage started early and never let up, slowly pulling away even as the Lumberjills kept trying to keep pace.
Stellar Bearcats junior Ava Fugate led off the bottom of the first with a shot to left, then classmate Paetynn Lopez drilled a two-run shot later in the frame. Both were no-doubters off the bat.
WF West went back-to-back in he fifth, getting solo jobs from Jasmine Gallea — in the No. 9 hole — and Fugate’s second of the afternoon. Again, neither had any doubt.
In the sixth, Taylor Barker wrapped it up, powering one over the left field fence to provide the mercy rule win for the Bearcats.
But the five home runs and as many doubles didn’t mean RAL pitches poorly.
Lumberjills starter Myah Bodily and reliever Miranda Bergquist (both are underclassmen) pounded the strike zone and pitched to contact. The Bearcats only received two free bases on walks and RAL committed only two errors. Neither walk scored.
“(Bergquist) came in in a tough situation and handled it well,” Godinho said. “She pitched well. They would’ve hit anybody. She didn’t leave the balls hanging or anything. They’re just good hitters.”
The Lumberjills forced WF West into six errors, but couldn’t take advantage of all of them.
Saige Kochis singled to start the second, stole second, then scored when a Mckenzie Hamer single was misplayed in left field. The throw home got away from catcher Lopez at the plate, and Hamer scooted over to third, where she was eventually picked off on a strike-em-out-throw-em-out double play.
RAL picked up another run in the fifth when Savannah’s Fesler blooped one into right, then pinch-runner Kennedy Keith scores after the Bearcats’ second error of the frame.
Woodland moves into title game: Woodland rode the arm of Olivia Grey and the bat of Kaily Christensen to an appearance in the 2A District 4 softball championship game with a 4-0 win over Tumwater on Friday.
Woodland plays either Ridgefield or W.F. WEst in the district title game this aftrenoon at 1.
After rolling past Aberdeen in its earlier game, Woodland got a dominate performance from Grey in the circle and two dingers from Christensen — a solo shot to lead off the ballgame and a two-run bomb in the fifth.
“It’s obviously a great relief,” Kaily Christensen said. “We take it game by game, but to know that we’re already there, we can just come in and have fun tomorrow.”
Woodland punches ticket: Woodland, now in the district championship game, has one more box to check off.