The Fort Lewis College softball team will head into Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference play under .500 after going 1-4 in its final non-conference tuneup of the year in Tuscon, Arizona at the Cactus Classic.
The Skyhawks (5-8) were swept on Friday, as they lost 4-3 to both Saint Martin’s University and UT-Permian Basin. They then rebounded by going 1-1 on Saturday after they defeated Biola University of California in a high-scoring 11-10 thriller, which was followed by an 11-3 loss to St, Mary’s University of Texas. In the final game on Sunday, they lost 6-3 in extra innings to Simon Fraser University of British Columbia, Canada.
In the first game, the Skyhawks got off to a quick 3-0 lead as they scored all three runs in the first three innings, but the bats went silent from there. Saint Martin’s responded by scoring three in the fifth to take the lead for good. FLC had runners on the corners after Angelique Elemen doubled and McKenna Hefley singled, but the Saints were able to get out of the jam. It wound end 4-3.
In the second game, FLC got off to another 3-0 lead against UT-Permian Basin, as Elemen drove in two runs with another double. The Falcons hit two home runs in the bottom of the third and then tied the game at three in the fourth with a sacrifice fly.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Falcons took the lead for good, after Abrie Castillo scored the go-ahead run on an error on a fly ball was misplayed in the outfield and Castillo scored. The Falcons would close the game with its relief pitching and held on for the 4-3 win.
In Saturday’s first game against Biola, Fort Lewis took its third 3-0 lead of the tournament after Elemen hit another bomb this year and got the Skyhawks on the board. They would go on to add one in the second, three in the fifth, four in the sixth, which included two RBI singles from Hannah Gondini and Julia Roberts. The Skyhawks added one more in the top of the seventh as Taylor Hollestelle homered, and that would prove to be the difference.
Despite holding a seemingly comfortable 11-5 lead heading into the final frame, Biola rallied and scored nine runs in the final three innings, including five in the bottom of the seventh. Dana Dwyer got the win, while Kassidy Trumbo was able to get the outs she needed to hold on for FLC.
The final two games against St. Mary’s and Simon Fraser did not have box scores.
FLC will begin RMAC play against Colorado Mesa next Saturday at 12 p.m. at Aspen Field.