The elements played a big role in games for the UO softball team last week. At home at Howe, the Ducks tried to get in three games with the Washington Huskies, but could only finish two with each team gaining one victory.
The No. 15 Oregon softball team (26-9, 5-5) endured a rain-delayed 26-hour doubleheader marathon with No. 7 Washington (34-7, 5-6) to stake a 1-1 series split.
The Ducks scored a 5-3 win in the opener for its second straight decision in the series, while the Huskies won the finale, 6-3, in nine innings on a three-run homer by pitcher Kaitlin Ingelsby.
In the opener it took more than 21 hours to decide, but No. 15 Oregon (26-8, 5-4) weathered a pair of three-hour rain delays to top No. 7 Washington (33-6, 4-5) by a 5-3 count in their series opener Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday morning.
On the first day of the continued game, sophomore first baseman Kailee Cuico put the Ducks up, 3-1, with a three-run, first-inning homer over the left field wall. Her fifth round-tripper of 2011 scored sophomore Courtney Ceo and senior Kelsey Chambers who had doubled and singled before, respectively.
The game’s first rain stoppage began at 4:24 p.m., and after multiple consultations between event officials, umpires and coaches, the game was halted at 8 p.m., and pushed to a 9 a.m. start Wednesday morning.
Unfortunately, another morning rain shower delayed action until 11:55 a.m. Soon after, Washington tied the game, 3-3, in the fifth inning on an infield error with a runner on third base.
UO bounced back ahead for good after a two-run homer by senior Christie Nieto in the bottom of the fifth inning – her third in the last six games (and overall this season).
Overall for the game, Cuico led UO in hits (2-for-2), and five others hit safely once – Ceo, Chambers, Nieto, sophomore Alexa Peterson and junior Allie Burger.
In the circle, Duck junior Jessica Moore (19-5) struck out seven, walked one, allowed nine hits, and one of her three runs allowed were earned.
The All-Pac-12 returnee moved into sole possession of 10th place on the school season wins list, and into a tie for third career-wise (59) with former great Jennie Cook.
In Wednesday’s doubleheader and series finale, Washington sophomore Kaitlin Ingelsby (17-4) lifted the Huskies to a nine-inning, 6-3 victory with both her bat and her arm.
The two teams survived a one-hour rain delay – its third in Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s doubleheader – before Ingelsby drilled a three-run homer – her ninth of the season – over the left field wall with one out in the ninth inning.
UO had staked a 3-2 lead in its three-run fourth inning, thanks to an RBI double by senior Kelsey Chambers, RBI single by junior Samantha Pappas and RBI ground-out by sophomore Alexa Peterson.
For the game, Chambers led UO in hits (2-for-4) with her 10th multi-hit game of the season – second-most on the squad behind Courtney Ceo (13).
In the circle, junior Jessica Moore (19-6) posted her second complete game in as many days with with a season-high nine inning, 174-pitch effort. The returning All-Pac-12 pick struck out seven, walked five, gave up nine hits, and five of her six runs allowed were earned.
Over the weekend, the No. 15 University of Oregon softball team (29-9, 8-5) polished off its first league sweep of the season with 6-2 and 11-1 wins over Utah (23-17, 0-12) Sunday morning at Ute Field.
In the finale, UO posted its second-highest run output in league play, thanks to a pair of homers by senior Kelsey Chambers, and single shots by sophomore Kailee Cuico and freshman Sara Goodrum. Chambers’ round-trippers raised her career tally to 34 and moved her into fourth place all-time for Oregon, and only three behind the school record of former Duck Andrea Vidlund (37).
Sophomore Alexa Peterson (3-for-4) paced the team in hits, and two others also stroked multiple hits – Chambers (2-for-3, 4 RBI, BB) and Cuico (2-for-2, 1 RBI, 2 BB).
In the circle, junior Jessica Moore (21-6) got the win for her first three innings of work. The returning All-Pac-12 pick struck out two, walked none, allowed five hits, and her one run allowed was earned.
Freshman Karissa Hovinga pitched the final three innings, posted no strikeouts or walks and allowed two hits and no runs.
Sunday’s first game was a continuation of a contest started Saturday but halted due to rain with UO up 3-2 in the third inning.
The Ducks scored first in Saturday’s second inning thanks to back-to-back solo home runs by senior Christie Nieto and Peterson. UO then strung together three singles to score its third run.
On Sunday, UO added two runs in the fifth on a two-run homer by Nieto and one more in the sixth on a bunt single by junior Allie Burger.
Moore pitched the complete game in the circle, struck out six, walked one, gave up seven hits, and one of her two runs allowed was earned.
Looking ahead, UO hosts Portland State for a doubleheader on Wednesday, April 18, then has a three-game set vs. No. 1 California, Friday-Sunday, April 20-22.