SPOKANE, Wash. – Senior Madi Perez tossed a no-hitter and went 5-6 with five runs batted in to lead Whitworth to a doubleheader sweep of visiting Puget Sound on Sunday afternoon at Marks Field. The Pirates won the opener 10-0 in five innings behind the Perez no-hitter, then rallied with four runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to take the nightcap 7-6.
Whitworth improved to 27-5 overall and 18-2 in the NWC by winning all four games over the Loggers (11-18, 4-14) this weekend and extending its winning streak to 11 in a row. The Pirates sit atop the conference standings with two weekends left to play in the regular season. Whitworth travels to play at Pacific Lutheran next weekend.
Perez, along with fellow seniors Tessa Matthews, Myranda Ramirez and Shannon Wessel, were recognized between games during the final regular season home series of their careers. The quartet went a combined 17-27 at the plate on Sunday with ten RBIs.
Game 1 – Whitworth 10, Puget Sound 0 (5 innings)
Perez tossed a five-inning no-hitter and also hit a grand slam in the Pirates' eight-run second inning to lead Whitworth to a win in the opener.
Perez improved to 16-1 on the season after striking out three batters and walking only one. She retired the Loggers in order in every inning but the second. Puget Sound was able to load the bases with two outs in the second, thanks to a walk, a hit batter and an error. But Wessel caught Kristi Nagamine's line drive to center field to end the threat.
Whitworth broke the game open in the second with eight runs. Perez led off with a single and scored on a double down the left field line by Rheanne Lewis one batter later. Lewis later scored on a McNaught double and McNaught eventually scored on a double steal to increase the lead to 4-0. Wessel added an RBI single that drove in Ramirez. By the time Perez came to the plate for the second time in the inning, the Pirates had loaded the bases and Perez drove a 3-2 pitch over the center field wall for a grand slam.
Matthews added an RBI single in the fourth for the final Whitworth run. Ramirez, Matthews, Perez and Wessel all had a pair of hits in the game.
Erika Gott started in the circle for Puget Sound and fell to 5-7 after giving up six runs on seven hits in 1.2 innings of work.
Game 2 – Whitworth 7, Puget Sound 6
The Loggers erupted for six runs in the top of the seventh to break their scoring drought, but the Pirates answered with four runs in the bottom of the seventh to claim a walk-off win on Allie Rude's RBI single to center field.
Perez started the second game for Whitworth and looked like she might pick up her second pitching win of the day. She went the first five innings and allowed no runs on three hits over that span.
Whitworth scored in the second on McNaught's RBI single and added two more runs in the fifth on an RBI triple by Silva and an infield single by Matthew's that scored Silva.
After throwing a scoreless sixth inning in relief, Ashley Trueblood allowed a walk and a double to start the seventh. Whitworth brought Perez back in to pitch and the Loggers finally figured her out. Pitcher Jaci Young drilled a three-run homer to right field to tie the game. After one more out Puget Sound strung together three straight singles to load the bases. Erica Gott followed with a two-run double to chase Perez. Jessica Gott added an RBI single off of Megan Truesdale to finish off the six-run rally.
Whitworth quickly loaded the bases against Young in the bottom of the seventh on singles by Ramirez, Wessel and Silva. Matthews followed with a two-run single and Perez added an RBI double to tie the game. After Logan Miller reached on a bunt single to reload the bases, Young got the first out. But Rude smashed a drive to center field that normally would have gone for extra bases, but instead ends as a game-winning single.
Truesdale picked up the win to improve to 2-2 with only a third of an inning of work. Perez finished the game 3-3 at the plate, while Ramirez and Miller both went 3-4.
Young (4-7) went the distance (6.1 innings) in the circle for Puget Sound, allowing seven runs on 17 hits. Nagamine finished the game 3-3 at the plate and Young led the Loggers with three RBIs on her fourth homer of the year.