Mayer Pitches Western Oregon Into Regional Final
In her 14 innings, Maddie Mayer allowed nine hits and struck out five batters. Photo by Troy Makalena.
In her 14 innings, Maddie Mayer allowed nine hits and struck out five batters. Photo by Troy Makalena.

Friday, May 10, 2019

IRVINE, Calf. – Western Oregon pitcher Maddie Mayer may be a freshman, but she didn’t throw like one on Friday.

The GNAC Freshman of the Year threw 14 scoreless innings in the NCAA Division II West Regional on Friday as the Wolves scored 1-0 victories over both Concordia and San Francisco State in a pair of elimination games.

In the two games, Mayer allowed a total of nine hits and one walk and struck out six as she improved to 12-4 on the season.

With the wins, Western Oregon (33-17) will play Concordia Irvine for the right to advance to next weekend’s Division II West Super Regional.

Meeting for the second time in as many weeks, the Wolves hoped to avenge a 5-0 loss to Concordia in the opening game of the GNAC Softball Championships. That win proved to be the catalyst in the Cavaliers’ run to the GNAC championship.

The meeting proved to be another pitcher’s duel with Concordia throwing both senior McKenzie Smith and junior Sally Bowles to allow a combined six hits in the game.

Concordia found it’s best scoring chance in the top of the first inning. Junior Macy Besuyen singled to lead off the game, advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt and went to third on a ground out before she was stranded on junior Hannah Self’s fly out. Mayer and the Western Oregon defense was in control from that point on, allowing just one Cavaliers’ runner past first the rest of the game.

Western Oregon had runners in scoring position in each of the first four innings, but would not break through until the sixth and used a pair of errors to plate the winning run. Sophomore Sydney Bowers singled to lead off the frame and advanced to third on the consecutive errors on the same play. That allowed senior Jenna Kelly to hit a sacrifice fly to bring Bowers home.

Mayer allowed six hits and struck out three in her first win of the day. Bowles took the loss for Concordia, allowing the one unearned run on one hit with one strikeout in 2.2 innings of work. Smith allowed five hits and two walks in 3.1 innings in what was her final start. Junior Kennedy Coy went 2 for 3 to lead Western Oregon at the plate while the six Concordia hits were spread among six different batters.

Concordia, playing in its first NCAA Division II Championship, finished the season at 31-24 overall.

San Francisco State’s pitching proved just as stingy as Concordia’s as Karla Soto allowed one run on six hits and a walk. With the exception of the Wolves’ two-hit third innings, the Gators did not allow a Western Oregon runner past first over the first six innings.

Once again, an error would play into the Wolves’ fortunes. Senior Cheyanne Rimer singled to lead off the seventh and advanced to second on an error. She moved to third on a fielder’s choice and scored on a walk-off single up the middle by Coy.

Mayer, meanwhile, proved more efficient in the second game than the first as she allowed just three hits and one walk while striking out two for her 12th win of the year. She allowed just two runners past first base, in the third and fourth innings, and retired her last seven batters of the game.

Coy once again went 2 for 3 to finish at 4 for 6 for the day.