softball

Palomino-Cardoza Named Volunteer Assistant

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EUGENE, Ore. – Alyssa Palomino-Cardoza, a two-time All-American at Arizona and the 2018 Pac-12 home run champion, will join the Oregon softball staff as a volunteer assistant coach, head coach Melyssa Lombardi announced Monday.
 
“We’re excited to have Alyssa as a member of our staff,” said Lombardi. “As a coach, she brings the experience of being both a recent graduate and one of the top players in the Pac-12, as well as now competing a professional, which will be invaluable to our student-athletes.
 
“Alyssa has a terrific all-around feel for the game. Her approach at the plate made her one of the toughest players to face in the Pac-12. I also admire how she was able to persevere through adversity and overcome injuries.”
 
Palomino-Cardoza capped an impressive collegiate career in the spring of 2021 by leading the Wildcats to their second consecutive Women’s College World Series appearance. She was named a NFCA first team All-American in 2018 and 2019, making her the first UA player to win back-to-back All-America honors in nearly a decade.
 
In her career, the four-time all-Pac-12 selection hit 69 home runs, which ranks eighth on Arizona’s career list and is tied for 11th all-time in Pac-12 annals. She also finished her career with 53 doubles to rank tied-for-fourth in UA history.
 
Palomino-Cardoza was an all-Pac-12 first team selection in 2018 and 2019 and a second team pick in 2017 and 2021. She was a three-time Pac-12 all-defensive selection, including the 2019 season when she did not commit an error while starting all 62 games in centerfield for the Wildcats. She was also a four-time NFCA All-West Region first team honoree.
 
The five-year starter had a career batting average of .346, a .717 slugging percentage and an otherworldly OPS of 1.162. Palomino-Cardoza was also one of the best defenders in the Pac-12 with a .990 career fielding percentage.
 
She hit 19 home runs in the back-to-back seasons of 2018 and 2019, which lead the league in 2018 and ranked 11th nationally. As a freshman, Palomino-Cardoza hit 16 home runs with 54 RBI to help the Wildcats win the Pac-12 title in 2017.
 
Before Arizona, the Mission Viejo, Calif., native set the Junior World Women’s Championship record with 27 RBI in the 10-game tournament. Palomino-Cardoza led the U.S. Junior National Team to a 10-0 record and the gold medal in the 2015 event and was named the USA Softball junior female athlete of the year.
 
She was a first-team high school All-America as a junior and senior, helping Mission Viejo High School to the national championship in 2014 and a state runner-up finish in 2015. Palomino-Cardoza also won three national titles with her club team, OC Batbusters.
 
www.GoDucks.com
 

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Udria-Ragin Returns to Oregon Softball

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EUGENE, Ore. – Nikki Udria-Ragin, one of the best players in program history, is returning to Oregon as an assistant softball coach, head coach Melyssa Lombardi announced Thursday.
 
Udria-Ragin joins Lombardi’s staff after a successful run as the head coach at Biola University that saw her lead the Eagles to the 2021 NCAA Division II championship series.
 
“Nikki is a tremendous competitor and an exceptional teammate who I first got to know while coaching her with Team USA,” said Lombardi. “As a player, she made everyone around her great and that has continued into her coaching career. Additionally, as one of the best players in program history, Nikki will have an immediate connection with our fans and our community and I know everyone will be really excited to welcome her home.”
 
The Biola staff was selected as the 2021 National Fastpitch Coaches Association West Region coaching staff of the year, while Udria was named the PacWest Conference coach of the year.
 
“It’s such a blessing to be returning to my alma mater as a coach,” said Udria-Ragin. “I’m extremely grateful to the athletic department and coach Lombardi for entrusting me with this position and welcoming me back to the university. I can’t wait to get back to Eugene with my husband and begin our life together. It’s an honor to be a part of Coach Lombardi’s staff, and to have the privilege to coach these amazing young women of Oregon. Go Ducks!”
 
In 2021, Biola set a number of program benchmarks. Not only did the Eagles advance to the national championship series for the first time, but Biola also broke into the NFCA Top 25 for the first time ever and climbed to No. 2 in the final poll. The Eagles posted a 26-16 final record in 2021. Along the way, The Eagles defeated Concordia-Irvine, the top seed in the West Region, 2-1 to advance to the national finals. Biola then defeated North Georgia twice and national top-seed Augustana once to move on to the championship series, before falling to West Texas A&M (two-games-to-one).
 
Udria-Ragin mentored three-time all-PacWest first team catcher Kayla Neff, who was named the 2019 PacWest player of the year. Udria-Ragin also coached the 2019 PacWest defensive player of the year, Missy Poti. During Udria-Ragin’s tenure, Neff and pitcher Paige Austin earned Biola’s first-ever NFCA/NCAA Division II All-West Region honors.
 
Udria-Ragin compiled a 72-38 record in three seasons as Biola’s head coach after serving as an assistant coach for the Eagles in 2018.
 
As a Duck, Udria-Ragin played in the NCAA postseason all four years and was part of three NCAA Women’s College World Series teams and three Pac-12 championship teams.
 
She was a two-time All-American, a four-time all-region selection and a three-time all-Pac-12 infielder. The Covina, Calif., native was also named to the 2014 Pac-12 all-freshman team.
 
In her career, Udria-Ragin hit .375 with a .599 slugging percentage and a .462 on-base percentage. She amassed 247 hits, 35 home runs, 35 doubles and 179 RBI. Udria-Ragin also scored 196 runs and stole 35 bases. She still ranks second in UO career runs, third in hits and RBI, sixth in batting average and ninth in home runs.
 
Udria-Ragin graduated from Oregon in 2017 with a degree in communication disorders and sciences and a minor in special education. Following her senior season, Udria-Ragin was selected as the 18th overall pick in the 2017 NFP Draft by the Houston Scrap Yard Dawgs.
 
She was one of 35 competitors selected for the USA Women’s National Team in 2018, whose staff included Lombardi. She played with Team USA in games in Japan and the USA.
 
Earlier this month Udria-Ragin married Johnny Ragin III, who played linebacker for the Duck football team from 2014-16.
 
www.GoDucks.com
 

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Ducks Add Transfer Catcher Karissa Ornelas

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EUGENE, Ore. – Oregon head coach Melyssa Lombardi announced another addition to the program Tuesday, adding transfer catcher Karissa Ornelas, who spent three seasons behind the plate at UCF.
 
“I like the experience that Karissa brings to our team,” said Lombardi. “As a catcher she’s a great communicator and will bring out the best in our staff. I also like the power she provides at the plate. I am thrilled that Karissa is a Duck and can’t wait to get started.”
 
Ornelas earned second-team All-American Athletic Conference honors as a junior in 2021, and owns a career .314 batting average with six homers, 51 RBIs and 14 doubles. She comes to Eugene with 103 career starts under her belt in 118 games played with a .387 on-base percentage and 36 walks.
 
The Murrieta, Calif., native hit .299 as a junior and finished with five homers and 20 RBIs while ending the year second in the conference with 10 runners caught stealing. Ornelas saw action in 51 games, starting 49 behind the plate. She delivered a walk-off homer against No. 5 Florida on March 24, giving the Knights a signature win on the way to making it to the NCAA Tallahassee Regional final.
 
During the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, Ornelas was second on the team with a .387 batting average while adding four doubles, a home run and 18 RBIs. She played in 26 games, starting 24, for a UCF team that finished the year ranked No. 21 in the NFCA Poll after going 21-5-1. Ornelas saw action in 41 games with 30 starts as a freshman in 2019, hitting .284 with four doubles and 13 RBIs while going error-free in 34 chances defensively.
 

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Diaz, McGowan Named Academic All-District

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EUGENE, Ore. – Samaria Diaz and Terra McGowan were both named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District 8 team on Wednesday for their stellar 2021 seasons both on the field and in the classroom.
 
McGowan earned second-team all-conference honors in addition to joining Bunker on the All-Pacific Region second team. She finished third on the team hitting .308 to go along with five homers and 26 RBIs. McGowan also added six doubles and 24 runs scored while batting .389 with runners in scoring position.
 
The Mission Viejo, Calif. native started 43 games at catcher and 10 as the designated player and finished second in the Pac-12 with 12 runners caught stealing. She started to catch fire down the stretch, hitting .480 between April 24 and May 7 with multiple hits in six of those games. McGowan also delivered a pair of walk-off hits in big games late in the season, hitting a walk-off two-run homer vs. Arizona on May 7, and a game-winning RBI single at Texas in an NCAA Regional game on May 23.
 
Diaz turned in a strong 2021 season in the circle, finishing 5-3 with a 2.76 ERA and 98 strikeouts to just 24 walks over 78.2 innings pitched. She ended the year tied for the Pac-12 lead with three saves and was sixth in the conference with 8.72 strikeouts per seven innings.
 
The fifth-year senior delivered some stellar performances in the circle down the stretch, posting a 0.40 ERA with 21 strikeouts to just one walk over her final six appearances of the season. Diaz got the victory in an elimination game at NCAA Regionals, throwing 5.2 scoreless innings with five strikeouts vs. Saint Francis. She then struck out six over 3.2 innings while giving up just one run in the regional final against Texas.
 
Diaz just completed her master’s degree in interdisciplinary studies with a focus in sports media and earned CoSIDA all-district honors for the second straight year, while McGowan, a psychology major, was named to the academic all-district team for the first time. Both qualified for the honor by achieving a GPA above 3.3 while playing key roles on the field for the Ducks.
 

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Ducks Add All-Big West Infielder KK Humphreys

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Oregon head coach Melyssa Lombardi added a big-time bat to her lineup Tuesday with the addition of transfer infielder KK Humphreys, who was a first-team All-Big West selection as a freshman in 2021 at Cal State Fullerton.
 
“We’re thrilled to welcome KK into the Oregon Softball family,” said Lombardi. “She’s a competitor with great energy and has a true passion for the game. KK has proven herself against elite levels of competition in her collegiate career and will be a great fit for our program.”
 
In addition to first-team all-conference honors, Humphreys was named to the Big West all-freshman team after finishing third on the team with a .366 batting average while hitting nine homers and driving in 35 runs. She also finished second on the team with 52 hits while scoring 33 runs and adding 10 doubles and 15 stolen bases.
 
Humphreys also finished in the top 10 of the Big West in eight different major statistical categories (SBs – 3rd, Hits – 4th, RBIs – 5th, HRs – 6th, Runs – 6th, 2Bs – 6th, SLG – 7th, AVG – 10th). She started 51 games as a true freshman, starting 39 at second base and 12 at shortstop for a Cal State Fullerton team that finished 38-15 and won its first 21 conference games on the way to a second-place finish in the Big West.
 
The native of Corona, Calif. ended the 2021 season by hitting safely in 10 of her last 11 games while turning in 10 multi-hit games and eight multi-RBI performances. She also hit .441 in Big West play while adding six home runs and 25 RBIs to go along with six doubles and 20 runs scored in conference games.
 
Humphreys went to Cal State Fullerton after lettering four years at Centennial High School where she earned All-Big VII League honors following her freshman through junior seasons. She also earned All-CIF Southern Section Division 2 honors as a junior after hitting .500 with five home runs while scoring 31 runs and stealing 21 bases. Humphreys capped off her high school career by homering in her final at-bat in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.

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Lombardi Adds Sam Marder to Coaching Staff

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EUGENE, Ore. – Oregon head coach Melyssa Lombardi announced the addition of Sam Marder as an assistant coach on Monday. Marder arrives in Eugene after successful stints as a hitting coach with multiple programs following a standout career as a player.
 
“I’m excited to announce Sam Marder as our new assistant coach,” said Lombardi. “I have known and coached against Sam for many years. She has played and coached at a championship level her entire career and understands what it takes to have success at the highest level. I can’t wait to have Sam get started with us and know she’ll be an invaluable addition to our program.”
 
Marder will work primarily with the Oregon hitters, and brings a decade of collegiate coaching experience to Eugene following stops at Oklahoma, Texas Tech, College of Charleston and Boise State. She also played two seasons in the National Pro Fastpitch league and was a three-time All-American at Ohio State from 2007-10.
 
“After speaking with Coach Lombardi and having watched the Oregon’s success over the past three years, you can clearly see what a special and successful direction the program is headed,” said Marder. “Coach Lombardi is a proven winner at the highest level, a tradition she continues at Oregon. I cannot wait to get started working with this staff and extremely talented roster of student-athletes.”
 
Marder most recently was on staff at Oklahoma, where she was a part of the Sooners’ 2021 national title team as a volunteer analyst. She helped their offense to a record year in which they led the country in batting average, home runs, on-base percentage, slugging percentage and walks while scoring 10.63 runs per game.
 
“Sam is more than ready and deserving for this opportunity,” said Oklahoma head coach Patty Gasso. “Her experience and knowledge of the game puts her as one of the best in the country. I’m excited to see Sam get started in Eugene. She will make an immediate impact and we couldn’t be more proud.”
 
Prior to her year at Oklahoma, Marder coached for four seasons at Texas Tech from 2017-20, spending the first two years as an assistant coach before being promoted to associate head coach in 2019. While with the Red Raiders, Marder was in charge of working with the hitters and catchers.
 
Under Marder’s guidance, the Red Raiders saw a big improvement in their offensive numbers, going from hitting .243 as a team in her first in year in 2017 to batting .294 in 2018, before finishing second in the Big 12 with a .319 team average in 2019. She helped lead Texas Tech to a regional appearance in 2019, leading a balanced offense that saw six starters hit over .300 while four drove in at least 40 runs and five players hit at least eight homers.
 
While in Lubbock, Marder helped guide Jessica Hartwell to NFCA All-America honors in 2018 after she hit .400 while finishing second in the Big 12 with 20 home runs and third in the league with 61 RBIs. She also worked with catcher Kelcy Leach, a Big-12 All-Freshman performer in 2018 and second-team all-conference honoree in 2019.
 
Marder spent the 2014-16 seasons as an assistant coach at the College of Charleston, where she was in charge of working with the program’s hitters in addition to assisting with the defense. The Cougars turned in two of the top 10 hitting seasons in program history during her three seasons on staff, hitting .288 (4th) in 2014 and .286 (6th) in 2016. Marder also helped them set the school record for fielding percentage in a season with a mark of .974 in 2016.
 
She got her start in coaching as an assistant at Boise State, spending two seasons with the Broncos in 2012 and 2013. Marder worked primarily with the defense in 2012, leading the Broncos to a school record for fielding percentage that year before assuming the role as hitting coach in 2013, guiding an offense that saw three players hit over .340 for the season.
 
Marder enjoyed a decorated career as a player at both the professional and collegiate levels. She was a three-time All-American at Ohio State before being named the NPF Offensive Player of the Year in her second pro season.
 
She still holds the Buckeye career records for home runs (61), RBIs (191) and walks (232) and was inducted into the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame in 2016. Her career walks total also ranks sixth all-time in NCAA history. Marder is also ranked in the top 10 in three other career categories at Ohio State and was a four-time All-Big Ten and All-Region selection from 2007-10.
 
Marder earned first-team All-NPF honors following each of her two seasons as a professional with the Akron Racers. She hit .403 with seven homers and 17 RBIs in her first year in 2011 before earning league player of the year honors after batting .343 with eight home runs and 27 RBIs in her second year in 2012.  
 
The Calabasas, Calif., native was a standout at Calabasas High School, where she was a three-time all-league selection. Her brother, Jack Marder, is currently an assistant coach with the Oregon baseball program.

MARDER’S COACHING CAREER
 

Years School Position
2021 Oklahoma Volunteer Analyst
2019-20 Texas Tech Associate Head Coach
2017-18 Texas Tech Assistant Coach
2014-16 College of Charleston Assistant Coach
2012-13 Boise State Assistant Coach
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Cruse, Yanez Named NFCA All-Americans

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Haley Cruse and Brooke Yanez both earned third-team All-America honors following stellar 2021 seasons, the NFCA announced on Wednesday. Cruse and Yanez are the 26th and 27th All-Americans in program history while this marks the 10th time that Oregon has had multiple players earn All-America recognition.
 
Yanez turned in one of the best seasons in program history by a pitcher, striking out the third-most batters in a year in UO history with 268 while leading the Pac-12 and sitting in 13th nationally with 10.29 strikeouts per seven innings. She went 22-6 with a 2.11 ERA over 182.1 innings pitched while tossing 14 complete games with seven shutouts.
 
The Ventura, Calif. native was at her best down the stretch, going 6-1 with a 1.35 ERA and 77 strikeouts to just 11 walks while posting three shutouts over her last 10 appearances. Yanez earned Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week honors following each of the final two weeks of the regular season, then put up big numbers in the postseason, going 2-1 with a 2.30 ERA and 33 strikeouts over 21.1 innings at NCAA Regionals.
 
Cruse led the team with a .389 batting average while leading the Ducks in six other major offensive categories. She also sits in the top 10 of the Pac-12 in six major categories offensively (AVG, R, H, 2B, OBP, SB). The Ducks’ leadoff batter finished the year with a .515 on-base percentage when leading off an inning and reached base in 50 of her 56 games played while also hitting four leadoff home runs.
 
The five-year star at Oregon finished her career as the only player in school history to lead the team in hitting four straight seasons, and will leave Oregon in the career top 10 of four different offensive categories. Cruse ranks fifth in batting average (.378) and runs scored (156), while sitting in seventh with 63 stolen bases and tied for eighth with 38 doubles.
 

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Season Comes to an End in Regional Final

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AUSTIN, Texas – Oregon saw its 2021 season come to an end at the NCAA Austin Regional after a whirlwind day that saw the Ducks walk-off to force a deciding game before falling in game two.
 
The Ducks first endured a five-hour rain delay prior to the start of game one, then proceeded to walk-off in extra innings for a 3-2 win after giving up a lead in the seventh inning. Oregon ultimately fell in the winner-take-all second game, 1-0, in a contest that went into the early morning in Austin.

“I’m so proud of this team,” said head coach Melyssa Lombardi. “Just to watch them transform from the beginning of the year to now, I can’t say enough. My heart hurts because they were right there, and I want them to get what they want, but we just fell short.”
 
“I can’t tell you how unbelievably proud I am of the fight and the will and how hard they want to play for each other and play for Oregon.”
 
Game 1: Oregon 3, Texas 2 (8)
In an instant classic, Terra McGowan delivered a walk-off single in the bottom of the eighth inning to force the winner-take-all game between Oregon and Texas in a 3-2 win for the Ducks.
 
How it Happened: The Ducks were just one strike away from finishing things off in the seventh, but Texas’ Courtney Day delivered an RBI triple to center field that was just out of the reach of UO center fielder Deijah Pangilinan to tie things up. Yanez would strand the runner at third however to keep things knotted up.
 
After Oregon didn’t score in the seventh and Yanez stranded a leadoff single in the top of the eighth, the Ducks brought the top of the order up to start the eighth. Haley Cruse set the table with a double to right field before Allee Bunker worked a walk to bring up McGowan with no outs. She swung at the first pitch and sent it to the base of the wall in right field to score Cruse and cap off the thrilling win.
 
Alyssa Brito put the Ducks on the board first, crushing a leadoff homer to left field to begin the bottom of the second.
 
Oregon doubled its lead in the fourth, putting together a two-out rally to make it 2-0. Shaye Bowden fought back from down 0-2 in the count to work a walk, before Haley Cruse singled to center to put runners at first and second. Allee Bunker cashed in with a clutch base knock just over the head of the second baseman to drive in pinch-runner Ariel Carlson.
 
Texas answered with a two-out rally of its own to cut the Ducks’ lead to 2-1. After Camille Corona reached on a bunt single, Janae Jefferson drove her in with an RBI double. Yanez would avoid further damage though, getting a flyout to end the inning.
 
Game 2: Texas 1, Oregon 0
Oregon dropped another pitchers’ duel in game two of the regional final doubleheader, falling to Texas 1-0 in a winner-take-all game that went deep into the night.
 
How It Happened: After the thrilling finish to game one, the two teams came out sluggish offensively in a game that was scoreless headed to the bottom of the fourth.
 
Texas broke through in the bottom of the fourth for the game’s only run as Jordyn Whitaker delivered a pinch-hit RBI single with two outs in the inning. That chased Oregon starter Samaria Diaz, who was stellar over her 3.2 innings prior to that, as Makenna Kliethermes came on and got the final out of the inning to minimize the damage.
 
Kliethermes pitched around trouble again in the fifth, stranding a pair of two-out singles, before Brooke Yanez entered to pitch the sixth and worked a 1-2-3 inning to give the Ducks a chance in the top of the seventh.
 
The Ducks got their first two batters on, after Rachel Cid led off with a double and Hanna Delgado reached on an infield hit. However, Oregon wouldn’t score as a strikeout and a pair of groundouts ended the game.
 
Overall Notables: Oregon reached 40 wins in a season for the 14th time in school history … Yanez finished the season with the third-most strikeouts in a year in school history with 268 … Her total trails only Cheridan Hawkins, who holds the top two spots on the list … Her complete game win in game one was her 14th of the season … Cruse ends her incredible career hitting .378, good for fifth-best in program history … She is also the only player in Oregon history to lead the team in hitting four straight years – no other player has done it more than twice … Oregon’s walk-off win in game one was its fourth of the season … It was also McGowan’s second walk-off hit of the year.

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Pair of Shutouts Send Ducks Into Regional Final

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AUSTIN, Texas – Oregon kept its 2021 season alive, led by dominant pitching in a pair of shutout victories over Saint Francis and Texas State on Saturday at the NCAA Austin Regional. Samaria Diaz, Makenna Kliethermes and Brooke Yanez combined to blank both opponents in 7-0 and 2-0 wins.
 
The Ducks will now need to beat host Texas twice on Sunday in order to move on to Super Regionals. The two teams will play at 1 p.m. PT on ESPN2. With an Oregon win, both teams will play a winner-take-all game following the first.
 
“Big-time character,” said head coach Melyssa Lombardi. “But that’s been this team all year. Every time we’ve asked them to answer, they’ve always answered.”
 
Game 1: Oregon 7, Saint Francis 0
Samaria Diaz and Makenna Kliethermes combined for a two-hit shutout while Oregon used a steady offensive attack to knock off Saint Francis, 2-0, in the first of two elimination games.
 
How it Happened: Diaz allowed just two baserunners and faced one batter above the minimum in her 5.2 innings pitched. She gave up a leadoff single then proceeded to retire the next 10 before allowing a single, which was then erased on an inning-ending double play. After setting down the next five, she gave way to Kliethermes with two outs in the sixth, and she set down all four she faced, striking out the side in the seventh.
 
The Ducks took advantage of some Saint Francis miscues to go in front 2-0 in the top of the first. After Haley Cruse reached on an error to lead off and Terra McGowan walked, Rachel Cid cashed both of them in with a two-run single up the middle.
 
Maddie Hopper made it 3-0 in the second inning with a RBI single to score Alyssa Brito, who singled and moved to third on an error to lead off the frame. The Ducks went scoreless in the third and fourth, but added another in the fifth. Cruse led off the inning with a line shot double off the left field wall and Allee Bunker cashed her in with a nearly identical two-bagger to make it 4-0.
 
Oregon put the game out of reach with a three-run seventh. Cruse helped account for yet another run, singling home Deijah Pangilinan to make it 5-0, before Shaye Bowden drove in Cruse with a sacrifice fly. Hanna Delgado capped off the scoring with a double to the right center gap, stretching the lead to 7-0.
 
Game 2: Oregon 2, Texas State 0
Brooke Yanez matched a program NCAA Tournament record with 14 strikeouts in a four-hit shutout of Texas State, leading Oregon to a 2-0 win in its second elimination game of the day.
 
How It Happened: Yanez found her way out of trouble all game long, working with traffic on the bases in all but one inning. She struck out a batter in every inning and fanned multiple Bobcats in all but one frame.
 
After walking the first two batters she faced in the second, Yanez threw out the lead runner on a bunt attempt, making a stellar play in front of the circle to get the runner at third. She fanned the next two batters to escape unharmed. Yanez again stranded a pair of runners in the third inning before leaving a runner on in the fourth through sixth innings.
 
Oregon struck first this time against the Bobcats, scoring two runs in the top of the second. After Rachel Cid and Hanna Delgado opened the inning with base hits and moved up a base on a bunt, Pangilinan beat out an infield hit to score Cid and make it 1-0. The Ducks capitalized on a Texas State miscue to score the next run, as Delgado came in to score on a throwing error on a stolen base by Pangilinan.
 
Overall Notables: Yanez moved into third on the Oregon single-season strikeouts list with 259 on the year … Her 14 strikeouts in game two tied the program NCAA Tournament record shared by Cheridan Hawkins (5/22/15) and Miranda Elish (5/17/18) … The 14 strikeouts are also tied for the second-most by Oregon as a team in a tournament game … Yanez turned in her 10th double-digit strikeout game of the year and the third in her last four starts … Pangilinan went 3-for-6 with an RBI and a run scored in the two games … Seven different Ducks drove in a run over the two games … Cruse’s three runs scored in game one matched a program single-game record in a tournament game.
 
On Deck: The Ducks will take on Texas in the regional final on Sunday starting at 1 p.m. PT. With an Oregon win, the two teams will play again later in the day with a Super Regional spot on the line.

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Missed Opportunities Cost Ducks in NCAA Opener

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AUSTIN, Texas – Oregon created numerous opportunities for itself offensively but was unable to cash in all game in a 5-1 loss to Texas State in the NCAA Regional opener Friday.
 
The Ducks will now have their backs against the wall, needing to win four in a row to advance after falling into the elimination bracket of the Austin Regional, starting with a matchup against Saint Francis on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. PT on ESPN3.
 
“It can be done,” said head coach Melyssa Lombardi. “It’s just understanding that we have to do things a little different. What we did tonight wasn’t good enough, so I think if we get back to our ball it can be done.”
 
How it Happened: Texas State (39-12) struck first, after Hailey MacKay hit a two-run homer with no outs in the second inning to make it 2-0. The Bobcats added another run as Tara Oltmann delivered a two-out double to make it 3-0.
 
Allee Bunker finally broke through offensively for the Ducks, leading off the bottom of the third with a solo shot down the left field line to cut the deficit to 3-1. Oregon threatened to add more in the inning, but stranded runners at second and third.
 
Oregon (37-16) starter Brooke Yanez got in a groove over the next couple of innings, setting down eight in a row at one point, but the Bobcats struck for two runs in the sixth inning to chase her. Oltmann and Sara Vanderford delivered back-to-back one-out doubles to make it 4-1, before another run came in on a wild pitch.
 
The Ducks threatened to rally in the seventh, getting a pair of runners on with one out in the inning, but couldn’t cash in.
 
Notable: Yanez (20-6) fanned double-digit batters in a game for the ninth time this season … Bunker took over the team lead in home runs with her 10th of the season … She also turned in her 17th multi-hit game of the year … Cruse recorded her team-best 19th multi-hit game this year, going 2-for-4 … The loss snapped Oregon’s 27-game winning streak in an NCAA Regional – the first loss in the round since 2008 … The Ducks went 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position and left 11 runners on base.
 
On Deck: The Ducks will play Saint Francis in an elimination game on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. PT on ESPN3.

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