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Western softball winds up as season winds down

Senior right fielder Alexie Levin hits a single during the second game of the Western versus Central Washington University four-game series on Friday, April 22 at Viking Field. Western took home a victory during the first game of the double header leading 2-1, but lost to Central with a final score of 7-5 in the second game. // Photo by Matthew Pearson
Senior right fielder Alexie Levin hits a single during the second game of the Western versus Central Washington University four-game series on Friday, April 22 at Viking Field. Western took home a victory during the first game of the double header leading 2-1, but lost to Central with a final score of 7-5 in the second game. // Photo by Matthew Pearson

Western’s softball team took the field Friday, April 22, in a doubleheader against arch-rival Central Washington, which was a rollercoaster of momentum for both ball clubs. The double header ended with both teams winning one game.

Western is 13-13 in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference and 24-21 overall. Central is leading the GNAC with a respectable 19-7 conference record and 33-12 overall, clinching the first seed after a split doubleheader on April 22. Coming off 19 consecutive road games, this was Western’s first game at home since March 21.

 

First Game

Western got off to a slow start struggling on offense.

It wasn’t until the 5th inning that Western was able to capitalize on runners in a scoring position. With 2 outs and 2 on base, Western down 0-1, junior Lynsey Amundson belted one into right center field singling while allowing her teammates to cash in for two points to take a lead 2-1.

“We could have done better at situational hitting because we had runners in scoring positions a lot but we didn’t situational hit,” Amundson said. “We had a lot of opportunities to score.”

Amundson went 2-5 and recorded 5 RBI in the doubleheader Friday.

“I’m just trying to battle, so I swung. It felt really good,” said Amundson shortly after her clutch hit which led to a first game win.

 

Second Game

The second game of the doubleheader was full of energy on both sides. With both head coaches barking at the umpires and tension arising as rain came and went, score changes went back and forth.

Down 0-3, Western took advantage of their momentum on offense after giving up 3 runs just prior to their turn at the plate. With the bases loaded, senior Alexie Levin ripped one into left field right over Central’s 3rd baseman Alexa Olague, receiving an RBI. With the bases still loaded, Amundson continued her clutch hitting by popping one into open turf recording another 2 RBI.

With the score 4-3 at the end of the 3rd inning, Western had made an impromptu comeback and seizing the lead. Although, it wouldn’t last long.

Three different Central players knocked 3 homers out of the park, one being senior Austin Wilkerson, a former Sehome High School student that grew up in Bellingham giving them the win with the final score 7-5.

“We could have done better at situational hitting because we had runners in scoring positions a lot but we didn’t situational hit.”

Junior Lynsey Amundson

Head coach Amy Suiter said, “We battled. We put ourselves in a position to win in both games. We did what we could do.”

It was a special day for Wilkerson as it was her last college game back home. Her high school coaches brought the Sehome High School softball team.

“It’s very humbling to look up in the stands and see how many people showed up to support me from day one,” Wilkerson said after the second game of the doubleheader, who was eager to greet friends, family and coaches. “It was pretty surreal, but pretty exciting to come out and have a ‘home’ game.”

Western hosts a doubleheader against Saint Martin’s 12 p.m. Saturday, April 23, to close out the regular season. Eight senior players will be recognized for their contributions to the program.

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