ALAMOSA—The weekend was exactly what the Adams State University softball team needed as they completed a 4-game series and win over the visiting Fort Lewis Skyhawks on Sunday at the ASU Softball Field.
The Grizzlies, who are now 10-21 overall and 9-12 in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, sit in 8th place in the RMAC standings.
The first game of the series was a shortened five-inning game as the Grizzlies nabbed a 9-1 win before getting a narrow 8-7 win in the nightcap. In the second doubleheader, the Grizzlies won in another walk-off 8-7 win before the fifth inning doomed the Grizzlies and kept them from getting the sweep with an 11-6 fall.
The first game was an offensive showing for the Grizzlies as they scored two runs in the bottom of the first. The first run crossed the plate when Gabrielle Griego, who was batting with the bases loaded, reached on a fielder's choice and an error was charged to the Skyhawk catcher. Whitney Fields then scored an RBI single to push Mackenzie Villarreal across the plate.
A triple by Adrianna Roshenhausl got Fort Lewis on the scoreboard in the top of the second; however, the Grizzlies responded with an RBI double from the reigning RMAC Player of the Week, Tyler Hays as she pushed Paige Reichmuth across the plate. Hanna Witjes followed with a double of her own in the third inning to score Griego.
The fourth inning saw Villarreal nail a two run home run before Fields had another RBI to make the score 7-1.
With the Grizzlies needing just one run to get the eight run-rule in effect, they did just that as Marissa Harmon hit a solid two run single that scored Hays and Reichmuth.
In the game, the Grizzlies had 11 hits with five of them of the extra base variety.
Fields was credited with the win, her third of the season, as she allowed five hits and walked five. She had three strikeouts on the day.
In the second game, the Grizzlies struck for eight runs in the first three innings but as luck would have it, they were narrowly able to escape with a 1-run win.
The Grizzlies scored five runs in the bottom of the first inning including a grand slam by Cheyenne Hamilton after Harmon hit a single to left field. The home run was the first of the season for Hamilton.
She then had another RBI in the third inning as she doubled to right center to score Harmon before Alexandria Quintana nailed a 2-run homer to score Hamilton.
With the Grizzlies leading 8-0, the defense needed to hold on for two innings to get the run rule win. However, they surrendered an unearned run on a 9-pitch battle that allowed a triple to push the run across.
In the top of the fifth inning, the Skyhawks had a two-run homer to make the score 8-4. They then scored a single run to make it a three run game entering the seventh quarter. However, the defense gave up a bases loaded walk, and an error on the Grizzlies allowed two runs to cross before Lauren Murphy, who was in the circle, was able to close out the game for the narrow win.
Murphy gave up just three earned runs as the Grizzlies suffered defensively with three errors. Murphy won her sixth game of the season as she gave up nine hits and five walks with just three strikeouts.
The first game on Sunday started with the two teams trading runs in the first inning.
The Grizzlies scored their first run on a foul out by Marissa Harmon to get Hays across the plate for an unearned run.
The Grizzlies then took their first lead of the game in the bottom of the second as Reichmuth earned an RBI when Hamilton scored the second unearned run of the game.
The Skyhawks regained the lead in the top of the third inning with three runs on two hits and two errors. The first run came from the aide of the umpire who blew a call at second base. Despite a single, Alexandria Quintana rebounded and fired the ball to second base and even though a bullet to second base and the tag beat the runner, she was ruled safe. The inning snowballed forcing Dervin Taylor to change pitchers.
The Grizzlies crawled back within one on another unearned run before the Skyhawks scored two in the top of the fifth to take a 6-3 lead.
Adams State was able to rally in the bottom of the sixth inning as they loaded the bases and ran the carousal around for the three runs to score.
After a scoreless seventh inning, the Skyhawks threatened first with a 1-out triple by Kellsi Peterson.
After a strikeout by Lauren Murphy, a walk followed by a solid single to right field allowed a run to come across and gave Fort Lewis a 7-6 lead.
Adams State was able to get a runner to third base with two outs before a walk to Harmon. Finally with a 3-2 count, Gabrielle Griego found the pitch she wanted and laced a walk-off 2-run double to right center to give the Grizzlies the 8-7 win in eight innings.
In the second game, the two teams were held score less in the first two innings but the third was explosive.
Fort Lewis scored four runs including a 2-run single and a 2-run home run to left field to land the first blow. The Grizzlies rallied in the bottom of the inning and loaded the bases with no outs. Two quick outs lifted the Skyhawks' hopes but a Harmon walk and a hit by pitch on April Riggins cut the lead in half before the third out was recorded.
After a scoreless fourth inning, the Skyhawks erupted for seven runs on five hits and five Grizzly errors to take an 11-2 lead.
The game appeared as if it was going to be a shortened five-inning game but with two strong hits by Adams State, they were able to keep the game alive with four runs. The runs came off 2-run doubles from Katelyn Johnson and Taylor Roberts.
Neither team would cross the plate again, however, and the final score was 11-6.
The Grizzlies will return to action next Saturday and Sunday when they host the Colorado School of Mines Orediggers for a four-game series that is set to start at noon on Saturday.
Cutline: Cheyenne Hamilton (22) launches a grand slam during the first inning of Saturday's second game to help the Grizzlies jump out to an 8-0 lead. The Grizzlies narrowly won the game by one run and took three of the four games on the weekend over Fort Lewis College. The wins helped ASU move into a sole possession of the eighth and final spot in the RMAC standing. Photo by Irma Lucero.