The Walk-Off: Washington, Arkansas avoid midweek upsets

Courtesy of Washington Athletics

What appeared to be a casual Thursday with a smaller salate of games turned into ranked opponents battling to avoid a midweek letdown.

Olivia Johnson slams the door on the Terps

After run-ruling Maryland in the first leg of the doubleheader, No. 8 Washington got to eight runs again to secure a win. The Huskies just took the scenic route in the 8-6 victory.

Maryland knocked out lefty Lindsay Lopez in the first inning after a six-run frame highlighted by Sydney Lewis’ grand slam. Freshman Sidne Peters came in and gave her team a chance to claw back into the game. She threw 5.1 hitless innings, striking out seven batters along the way.

It took a while, but the Huskies bats got hot. Washington needed a five-spot in the seventh inning to win the game. Jillian Celis led of with a homer. Alana Johnson singled in Rylee Holtorf, who had tripled. A pair of walks loaded the bases for Olivia Johnson. She decided that she wanted to match Lewis’ swing from earlier in the game, smashing a walk-off grand slam for a happy home opener in Seattle.

Kennedy Miller comes up big for the Razorbacks against South Dakota State

The Arkansas lineup is filled with experience. Yet, a freshman keeps popping up in key moments. In a battle at Bogle Park, the Razorbacks were knotted up at three with South Dakota State in the fourth. That’s when Kennedy Miller provided a two-out go-ahead double to put Arkansas up 4-3 for good.

The offense didn’t have to worry about scoring another run with Hannah Camenzind in the circle. After the Jackrabbits homered twice to chase Robyn Herron and tied the game against Morgan Leinstock, Camezind was trusted to get Arkansas out of the mess. She certainly did. Camenzind retired every batter she faced over 3.1 innings.

Bri Ellis had a two-run bomb for Arkansas in the first inning. Mia Jarecki and Jocelyn Carrillo provided the blasts for South Dakota State, the firsts against Herron all season. It should be another battle between these two on Saturday, especially if Tori Kniesche gets the ball. 

Softball around America

  • While No. 10 Alabama only beat UNI 1-0 to start its most challenging weekend of the season, it didn’t really feel as if the Tide were in danger. Kayla Beaver shut down a first-inning rally and only allowed one runner to reach second base the rest of the way. Alabama scored its lone run against UNI’s ace Samantha Heyer on a bases-loaded groundout.
  • The other pitcher from Alabama who no-hit UNI last week outdid herself Thursday. Maddie Penta tossed Auburn’s third perfect game against Georgia State, picking up 13 strikeouts in a sixth-inning 8-0 win over Georgia State.
  • Howard set a new program record with its 11th straight win after knocking off Towson 5-4. Bianca Worthy, who is hitting .490 this season, went 4-for-4.
  • No. 19 Texas A&M found its offense again, picking up two wins at the Judi Garman. Emiley Kennedy struck out 12 in a 6-0 win over Michigan as the offense got to Lauren Derkowski. Julia Cottrill and Trinity Cannon combined to hit three home runs and drive in nine runs to beat Long Beach State 16-7.
    • It’s worth noting that according to the radio broadcast, starting pitcher Shaylee Ackerman, who has dealt with injuries, left early. Amani Harper exited the game after a play at the plate. This is after Koko Wooley was replaced on Tuesday against Sam Houston State and did not play in either game.
    • The trip to California the past two weeks has not been kind to Michigan. The Wolverines dropped a game to Sacramento State last week, then have started this week 0-3 losing to Long Beach State in extras, scoring 1 combined run in their doubleheader versus A&M and Fullerton.
  • Speaking of Sacramento State, the Hornets earned their second Power Five win taking down BYU 4-3. Haley Hanson’s RBI single in the fourth proved to be the difference. Marissa Bertuccio kept the Cougars at bay, picking up 8 Ks. 
  • Florida enjoyed its day across the coast. The Gators beat Fullerton and Long Beach State by a combined 24-0. Keagan Rothrock tossed a five-inning no-hitter while the offense had a nine-run inning against Fullerton. The offense was distributed more throughout the innings against Long Beach State in the 15-0 win. The Gators’ first five hitters collected nine RBIs.
  • What’s more impressive? NiJaree Canady’s 16 Ks against Boise State or that Taryn Kern walked two more times? While its probably the strikeouts, Kern’s on-base percentage continues to hover around .550 after a 7-0 win over a good Boise State team.
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