YUMA, Ariz. – Eight proved to be the magic number on Saturday afternoon for the Arizona Western College softball team. The Lady Mats swept Scottsdale Community College 8-0 in six innings in game one before winning 8-4 in game two. The offense racked double digit hits in both games.
In game one, the AWC (26-13 overall, 18-12 Arizona Community College Athletic Conference) offense took time to get warmed up and generate runs. Hailey Cookson put AWC on the board in the third inning. She singled in a run for a 1-0 lead and went 3-4 with a run scored in the game.
A couple of long balls pushed the lead to 4-0 in the fourth inning. Jessica Alvarez smacked a solo home run for her seventh homer of the year. A few batters later, Isabel Sanchez yanked a ball out of the park for a two-run homer that pushed the lead to four. It was her third homer this season.
AWC added three more runs in the fifth inning. With two outs, Sally Gastelo knocked a run in to push the lead to 5-0. Nadia Hernandez doubled home two more runs for a 7-0 lead.
Julie Roach ended the game in the bottom of the sixth. She hit home a runner from third to push the lead to 8-0 to win by the mercy rule.
Belinda Gonzalez (14-7) earned her 14th win of the season with a complete game effort. She scattered five hits in six innings while walking four and striking out two.
AWC answered every Scottsdale (13-23 overall, 8-22 ACCAC) rally in the second game. Scottsdale scored runs in three innings, but the Lady Mats always responded in the bottom half of each inning.
Scottsdale led off with a run in the first inning, but the Lady Mats immediately tied the game in the bottom of the first.
In the fourth, Scottsdale pushed a run across for a 2-1 lead, but AWC again had the answer. This time, the team used five hits to plate four runs for a 5-2 lead.
The Artichokes cut into the lead again in the sixth inning, but the Lady Mats responded. After seeing the lead trimmed to 5-4, AWC punched in three runs for an 8-4 lead that proved to be the final.
Allison Betty went 4-4 with a double, three runs scored and an RBI in the game. Hailey Cookson went 2-3 with two RBI. The offense racked up 14 hits.
Cookson (7-2) earned the win for the Lady Mats in the circle. She allowed two runs on four hits while walking two in four innings. Belinda Gonzalez earned her first save of the season by pitching the final three innings. She allowed two runs on four hits while striking out two.
The Lady Mats are back at home on Tuesday. They host Paradise Valley Community College with the first pitch scheduled for noon. Admission is FREE!
Arizona Western College is one of the top community colleges in Arizona. The college boasts partnerships with all three state universities that include face-to-face classes in Yuma. AWC leads the state in enrollment growth over the past 10 years and handed out more than 2,400 certificates and degrees in 2015-16.