The Northwestern softball team lost three of its four contests against conference opponents this week. On Wednesday, the Red Raiders hosted to 15th-ranked Morningside and lost both matches of the doubleheader 4-3 and 11-0. With the losses they fall to 10-13 on the year and just 1-3 in GPAC play.
“On Wednesday, we played one of our biggest rivals,” said junior catcher Monse Figueroa. “We were not able to finish the game due to simple mistakes and [Morningside] hitting the ball well.”
In the first game, NW was in control early after a two- run homer by junior Jessica Rayela in the third inning, followed by another Rayela solo home-run in the fifth. The Red Raiders held the advantage 3-1 going into the last inning. After two errors by NW and three earned runs from Morningside, the visiting Mustangs were able to pull out the victory.
The second game was all Morningside as they quickly got ahead 7-0 after the first two innings. NW was unable to match Morningside’s fire power as they tallied just three hits for the game.
“All we can do is learn from these times and learn to push through those pressure moments to be able to finish the game well,” Figueroa said. “We still have plenty of games left to finish at the top.”
On Monday, the Red Raiders opened up GPAC play in a doubleheader at home against Concordia. NW split the two games, winning the first one 4-3 and dropping the second 7-2.
NW won the first game in dramatic fashion as senior Laura Hurley bombed a walk-off two-run homer in extra innings to give the Raiders the victory. NW held a 2-1 lead going into the seventh but Concordia responded scoring an RBI triple to tie the game. Concordia then took the lead early in the eighth 3-2, before Hurley’s heroics. Hurley lead NW going 2-for-4 with 4 RBI’s, and senior Allison Herbert also had two hits.
“It’s so good to see Laura step up the way she did,” said head coach Chris Nachtigall. “We’ve played some of our toughest competition early in conference play. We need to keep improving from here and striving for consistency.”
The softball team will play again tomorrow (Saturday, April 2) to take on Nebraska Wesleyan in Lincoln, Neb., in another doubleheader.