The Portland State softball team (11-22, 3-7 WAC) finally got some playing time against Loyola Marymount (20-27, 6-7 WAC), after prior games against Oregon State and Oregon were rained out. Unfortunately for the Vikings, home field advantage wasn’t enough to defeat the Lions. With Portland State continuing to struggle offensively, Loyola Marymount was able go away with both games in Saturday’s doubleheader.
The Vikings had their junior ace, right-hander Morgan Seibert, on the mound for game one. Seibert continued her season of solid pitching, allowing only two runs off five hits, two walks and 11 strikeouts. Inching closer to the PSU strikeout record, Seibert has had double figure K’s in several of her recent appearances on the mound.
Although the Lions only got five hits in the opener, three of them were big. In the first and fifth innings the Lions cracked out three doubles to score a runner in both.
Portland State tried to get its offense going late in the seventh, scoring junior Vanessa Applegate.
“We can’t seem to get our bats going,” head coach Teri Mariani said.
With one out in the bottom of seventh, Applegate doubled down the right field line bringing up freshman Rose Rutledge. With the tying run at the plate, Rutledge singled into center, scoring Applegate. The Vikings had two more chances to stay in the game, but couldn’t and left the tying run on base in the end of game one.
Game two was a rough one for the Vikings, who fell 9-2. The Lions crossed the plate nine times, but six runs were off three Viking errors.
Portland State had junior Megan Herscher on the mound in game two, who pitched her eighth complete game. Herscher allowed nine runs (three earned) on 12 hits and a walk.
The Lions’ Sami Strinz, who held the Vikings to one run in the opener, donged a two-run homer to center in the top of the sixth. With Strinz homer the Lions were on top 9-0.
PSU answered back in the bottom of the sixth with a homer of its own. Junior Nichole Ivie cracked a two-run homer into deep center to get the Vikings on the board. The Viking bats went quiet after that.
“We need to get in the attack mode when we’re at the plate,” Mariani said of the Vikings offensive struggle.
The veteran coach explained that the players know what they need to do. They just need to find a way to convert what they do in practice to what they do in the games.
With the two losses to the Lions, PSU falls behind Loyola Marymount, who are in fourth place in the Western Athletic Conference.
“This is a key week. There are games that we should win and get back in it” Mariani concluded.
The Vikings continue their home stay and take on Western Oregon tomorrow in a non-conference doubleheader. The game is scheduled for 3 p.m. at Erv Lind Stadium.