Coyote Softball loses doubleheader against Ottawa
OTTAWA — Kansas Wesleyan Softball saw its seven-game winning streak shattered when the Coyotes dropped both ends of a doubleheader to Ottawa, which receives NAIA Top 25 votes and was ranked in the Top 25 last week, Thursday at Alumni Park.
Ottawa won the opener 2-1 in nine innings and won the second game 8-0 in six innings.
The first game was a pitching duel between two of the KCAC’s top guns, KWU’s Carmen Angulo (SR/Long Beach, Calif.) and Ottawa’s Casson Rasmussen.
Neither team scored until the ninth inning, although both had chances earlier in the game. Ottawa left a runner on third base late in the third inning as Angulo earned a strikeout to end the inning.
The Coyotes had a chance in the fifth as Bailey Rivas (SO/West Covina, Calif.) started the inning with a hit and moved to third base, but Ottawa played great defensive play to end the period.
The Braves had a chance to retire in the bottom of the seventh, but again Angulo stepped up and earned a strikeout to end the inning after Ottawa had runners in second and third.
In the extras, Ottawa again had a chance in the bottom of the eighth, but failed to get the run through.
Finally in the ninth, both teams broke through. Paige Anderson (JR/Lakeville, Minn.) was the second tiebreaker runner to start the inning and went third on a wild pitch. Two batters later, Mia Hernandez (FR/Hanford, Calif.) hit an undershot and Anderson scored on a pitching error to give the Coyotes a 1-0 lead.
Late in the inning, Ottawa moved its runner to third on a steal, and after a ground out, the Braves got runners on the corners on a defensive pick. The Braves would get the game winner on a bunt and an error.
Both pitchers allowed just two hits in the game and the combined three runs were unearned. Angulo struck out eight for the Coyotes. Rivas and Lauren Blue (SR/Arlington, TX) had KWU’s only hits.
Ottawa secured an 8-0 win in Game 2 of six innings.
Wesleyan had a chance to do something at the top of the first, charging the bases with a walk to Anderson, a single from Hernandez and a walk to Brianna McGinnis (SR/Tucson, Ariz.), but the Coyotes didn’t could get a run through.
The game took one down the first, when there was a delay for lightning in the area that halted play for about 35 minutes. Once recovered, Ottawa scored two runs in the bottom of the inning to take a 2-0 lead.
Wesleyan charged again in the third inning when Hernandez reached on an error, McGinnis walked and Rivas scored a single, but the Coyotes couldn’t score.
Ottawa added a run in the bottom of the inning and three more in the fifth before finishing the game in sixth with two runs.
Wesleyan was held to four hits in Game 2, two from Hernandez, who saw his seven-game home run streak end, but not before setting what could be an NAIA record for the feat. . She also reportedly broke or tied records at the NCAA Division I and III levels and was one shy of the Division II record.
The Coyotes have a huge series coming up Saturday as KWU hosts Oklahoma Wesleyan at 1 p.m. at Salina South. The Eagles lead the KCAC by one game against Ottawa. The Coyotes are four games out of first place and three out of second place with four games left in the regular season.
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