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Nighthawks Continue Strong Playoff Push For Weekly Honor
Northwest Nazarene finishes its conference slate with two straight road series. The Nighthawks visit Concordia this weekend before taking on third-place MSUB next week.
Northwest Nazarene finishes its conference slate with two straight road series. The Nighthawks visit Concordia this weekend before taking on third-place MSUB next week.

Monday, April 16, 2018

PORTLAND, Ore. – With the postseason race heating up, Northwest Nazarene made a strong push for a GNAC Softball Championships appearance as it took three of four against defending conference champion Central Washington last weekend. The wins not only gave the Nighthawks a share of first place, it also hands them this week’s Red Lion/GNAC Team of the Week honor.

Northwest Nazarene opened the series with a 3-2 win on Friday before dropping the nightcap 6-4. The Nighthawks rebounded in Saturday’s doubleheader by taking a pair of 7-3 victories. Northwest Nazarene has now won 9 of its last 11 games and sits in a tie for first place with Central Washington at 22-19, 13-7 GNAC.

Dominant pitching by freshman Jordan Adams led Northwest Nazarene in the series opener. Adams allowed two runs on four hits and struck out seven for her 13th win of the season. She leads the conference with a 1.54 earned run average.

“It shows us that we are capable of being number one,” said shortstop junior Anna Olson.

“When everybody contributes, it makes it that much more exciting. It just shows that all of the hard work is paying off,” added junior outfielder Anna Williams.

The Nighthawks finished the series on a high note with a pair of solid wins in Saturday’s doubleheader. Williams went 4 for 5 with four RBIs over the two games while Adams picked up her 12th complete game in the opener and first save in the second game of the twinbill.

“Notoriously, [the Wildcats] are the top dogs,” said Williams. “Having them come into our house and taking three from them is absolutely awesome. We took advantage of our opportunities and finished today. I’ve been putting in a lot of hard work and it is finally paying off.”

Northwest Nazarene has been an offensive force as it leads the GNAC in a handful of hitting categories. The Nighthawks pace the conference in batting average (.321), slugging percentage (.480), on-base percentage (.388), runs scored (229), hits (370), RBIs (213), doubles (73) and total bases (553). Its pitching staff is also second in the GNAC with 175 strikeouts.

Not only do the Nighthawks earn the conference’s weekly team honor, but they swept the GNAC Softball Player of the Week awards for the second consecutive week. Williams was named the Softball Player of the Week after she hit .454 in the four games, going 6 for 11 with five runs, six RBIs, two doubles, a triple and a pair of home runs. Adams repeated as the Softball Pitcher of the Week after she allowed five runs, two earned, on 11 hits and three walks while striking out 10 in 15 innings of work. She went 2-0 in three appearances with a save.

Northwest Nazarene finishes its conference slate with two straight road series. The Nighthawks visit Concordia this weekend for a four-game set before ending its regular season at third-place Montana State Billings next week.

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