The #19 Oregon Softball team (5-0) left the Kajikawa Classic undefeated thanks to some young offensive talent. This week, they’ll face three ranked teams in the St. Pete Clearwater Elite Invitational.
The most freeing thing an athlete can do is learn to be a selfless teammate. It’s amazing what you can achieve once you start putting the team before your pride and your own individual stats— Haley Cruse (@haley_crusee) February 13, 2019
After a chaotic offseason full of turnover, new head coach Melyssa Lombardi and her young team started off the season in Tempe, Arizona at the Kajikawa Classic. Last year, coach Mike White’s Ducks dominated the event, not only beating every team they faced, but run-ruling five of their six opponents and outscoring them by a combined total of 73 to 12.
Oregon’s appearance at the Kajikawa wasn’t quite as impressive as last year’s, but impressive nonetheless as they left undefeated despite losing almost their entire starting squad from last season.
DUCKS 14 - JAYHAWKS 5
- Senior Cherish Burks opened up the scoring with a two-run single. Then, freshman Rachel Cid made her presence known by blasting a three run homer in the second. Sophomore Shaye Bowden hit a solo homer in the third, Cid continued her impressive debut by hitting an RBI single in the fourth.
- The incoming class of freshman showed up big against the Jayhawks, including Hannah Galey, who crushed a leadoff homer in the fifth and then followed that up with a two-run bomb. Bowden, Burks and Galey capped off the game by driving in four scores.
- Kansas scored in the fourth after a double and wild pitch setup an RBI single. Then scored four runs in the sixth off of two two-run homers.
- Jordan Dail looked great for most of the game, finishing with 10 strikeouts and allowing just four hits in 5.2 innings. Kansas had some success in the sixth, leading to Maddie MacGrandle entering the game. She finished by retiring all four batters she faced and closing the game with a strikeout.
- Ducks scored 14 runs on 13 hits.
DUCKS 12 - MATADORS 5
- Down 2-0 in the third, the Oregon Ducks scored three runs in the third and then nine runs in the fourth. Shaye Bowden struck first for the Ducks with an RBI single, then scored via a pair of walks when the bases were loaded. CSUN then reclaimed the lead by matching Oregon’s three runs in the bottom of the third, but the Ducks took control of the game by scoring nine in the next frame. Led by Rachel Cid’s two-run homer, a Cherish Burks single, a two-run single by freshman Lexi Wagner, a two-run triple by Haley Cruse who started the inning, and a sacrifice fly by freshman Allee Bunker. There were a plethora of errors by the Matadors that contributed to Oregon’s offensive success, as well.
- Oregon racked up 12 runs on 11 hits.
- Maddie MacGrandle had a rough go in her first start, allowing five runs in three innings. Dail took over from there and finished with four strikeouts while allowing only one hit.
DUCKS 6 - TIGERS 1
- April Utecht and Shaye Bowden drove in Cruse and Bunker to open the scoring in the third inning. Then, with bases loaded at the top of the fifth, Lexi Wagner’s sacrifice fly scored followed by an RBI fielder’s choice by freshman Annalisa Williamson. Galey took advantage of a Tiger error in the seventh after putting herself in scoring position with a double.
- Jordan Dail played her first full game as a Duck and earned her third win, allowing just one run on six hits and finishing with six strikeouts and two walks.
- Missouri came into this game as a PAC-12 assassin, fresh off back-to-back run-rule victories over Utah and #12 Arizona State.
DUCKS 13 - BRAVES 3 (5)
- Maddie MacGrandle started off poorly by allowing three runs in the opening frame, but finished strong (allowing three hits, three runs, eight walks, and striking out ten batters.) and was aided by a helluva offensive performance from the Ducks.
- Ted Bundy was a Husky.
DUCKS 8 - REDHAWKS 6
- In the third, Rachel Cid drove in Jasmine Sievers for her first collegiate score. Bowden then tied things up with an RBI triple. Galey and Sievers both hit homers in the fifthto take an 8-5 lead; Galey smashed a three-run homer followed by a two-run bomb by Sievers.
- The Redhawks built a 2-0 lead by scoring a solo homer in the second and then on a wild pitch in the third when bases were loaded. Then, after Oregon tied it up, SU reclaimed the lead with a three-run home run. They scored once more in the sixth, but were unable to keep pace with the hot bats of Oregon.
- Dail showed some signs of fatigue and was taken out after SU’s fourth inning homer. After a brief appearance by MacGrandle, Dail reappeared to close out the game.
- Sievers missed the first four games due to injury, but made up for it by going 3-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
STATE OF THE PAC*
#19 OREGON (5-0-0)
OREGON STATE (5-0-0)
#2 UCLA (5-0-0)
#14 ARIZONA STATE (4-1-0)
#5 WASHINGTON (4-1-0)
#9 ARIZONA (3-2-0)
*Rankings determined by the USA TODAY/NFCA COACHES poll.
DUCK OF THE WEEK
After hitting three homers and 10 RBIs, Rachel Cid has quickly proven herself as a name to for in the PAC-12. She’s hitting .471 has an on-base percentage of .591 and is tied for second in the Pac-12 in RBIs and home runs.
ST. PETE CLEARWATER ELITE INVITATIONAL
#8 LSU, 2/15, Friday, 9:30 AM, SEC NETWORK
#23 JAMES MADISON, 2/15, Friday, 2:30 PM, ESPN 3
FLORIDA ATLANTIC, 2/16, Saturday, 7 AM
#18 KENTUCKY, 2/16, Saturday, 1 PM, ESPNU