Contact: Mark Albanese, Director of Sports Communication
WEST LINN, Ore. - Anna Overland drove in seven runs as the Pacific Lutheran University softball team cranked out 24 hits in a doubleheader sweep of host Lewis & Clark College on Saturday. The Lutes scored early and often in a 12-0 mercy rule victory in the opener before closing the afternoon with a 5-1 win to secure the sweep and remain undefeated in Northwest Conference play.
"It's always good to play well on the road," said Head Coach Brandi Gordon Bennett. "We got moved to a turf field and our players responded well. Our offense is staying hot and our pitching is doing their job."
The Lutes (8-2, 4-0 NWC) ran roughshod over the Pioneers (0-6, 0-2 NWC) in game one with Anna Overland driving in five runs in the mercy rule victory.
Samantha Simundson drove in the game's opening run in the top of the first before plating another run in the top of the second. PLU stretched its lead to six on the next at bat with Overland collecting her second grand slam of the season.
The Lutes continued to pour on the runs in the fifth inning, with Emily McConnell, Simundson, Overland, Nichole Schroeder, and Annika Hildebrand all collecting RBIs to push the PLU lead to 12-0.
Marissa Miller collected the win inside the circle, striking out three and surrendering just three hits for her third complete game shutout of the season.
In the nightcap, PLU struck early, plating two runs in the first inning including an RBI single from Overland. Lewis & Clark got on the board in the bottom of the third, closing within a run on a PLU error.
Overland struck again in the fifth inning with another RBI single and later scored on a Katheryn Hatlen base knock to right field, pushing the Lutes' advantage to 4-1. Becca Sorensen padded PLU's lead in the seventh, hitting a double to score Hope Jones.
The Pioneers loaded the bases and had the tying run at bat in the bottom of the seventh but a fielder's choice followed by a flyout secure the win and the day one sweep for PLU.
Sorensen finished game two with three hits while Overland drove in two runs and scored twice. Elli Rassbach earned the win, tossing a complete game and allowing no earned runs.
"Overland connected again a few times and if she keeps swinging at good pitches, with her swing, she will continue to do well. We still are looking for things to get better even though the team is putting wins together."
The Lutes and Pioneers return to the diamond tomorrow with another twinbill getting underway at noon.
"For tomorrow we are hoping to make adjustments at the plate earlier in the game and clean up a few things defensively and put away batters sooner in counts. All and all we are pretty fun to watch right now."