APU softball comes away with a win in a doubleheader against Saint Martin’s

Azusa Pacific softball held its home opener on Friday, splitting the double header against Saint Martin’s (SMU) with a 2-1 walk-off victory in the first game and an 8-0 loss in the second. Despite the loss, the Cougars remain above .500 with a record of 4-3. 

In the first game, APU kept SMU’s offense in check with senior Kat Ung’s stellar pitching and senior catcher Jenna Gorman throwing out two baserunners throughout the first three innings. Meanwhile, senior Emily Moran got the Cougars on the board with a solo home run to left-field in the bottom of the third, giving them a 1-0 lead.

Despite giving up a home run in the fourth, Ung kept her composure and fed off her tenacious defense. 

“They did so amazing, and as a pitcher just to know I have that safety net of my teammates behind me still making their plays, I just felt so comfortable knowing that my team would also produce runs,” Ung said.

The game remained tied through seven innings at 1-1, a pitcher’s duel against Saints’ pitcher Brandi Schoellser. In the eighth, SMU came within striking distance with two runners on base. Once again, Ung and company left the two Saints runners stranded after a clutch diving catch from senior outfielder Brielle Fraijo.

Ung was quick to give praise to her teammate.

“She has been so consistent in the outfield and throws have been good,” Ung said. “She has been amazing making plays.” 

The Cougars kept that momentum going entering the bottom of eighth, as they placed Schoellser in a tough spot with runners in scoring position. Junior Becca Jewett capitalized on a fielder’s choice, giving APU a walk-off 2-1 victory.

In the second game, it was a defensive showcase between the two teams with neither squad giving up a run through four innings. Unfortunately for the Cougars, SMU scored six runs in the fifth inning, followed by two more in the sixth. The Saints kept APU scoreless and took an 8-0 victory in the second game of the series.

After the game, head coach Carrie Webber noted her team’s defensive efforts and ability to get on base, but emphasized the need to execute on offense.

“I was really proud and excited about the direction we were going. We were really solid on defense and putting runners on bases but sometimes that runs out and you have to start executing,” said Webber. “I was proud of the way we played for twelve innings and it was unfortunate we couldn’t pull the trigger in the last few innings.

Senior Brielle Fraijo shared how the Cougars will bounce back next game. 

“Just coming out aggressive with our bats as we did in the first game, getting our runners in, and having the mindset of what are we willing to do for one another,” Fraijo said.

The Cougars will resume play at 1:30 p.m on Monday against UC San Diego.