Photo by Gerardo Bolong
Mt Rainier batter Olivia Haney puts the ball into play against Thomas Jefferson.

SLIDESHOW: Rams open door for Raiders

By Gerardo Bolong

Late inning unforced Mount Rainier errors in the field opened the gate for Thomas Jefferson to enter the victory column in a 5-4 eight inning SPSL girls fast pitch softball home win on Tues., April 1.

After Texas Southern-bound Ram right hander Jasmine Fulmore had shut out the Raiders on four hits and 11 strike outs over six full innings, Jefferson struck back in the bottom of the seventh inning beginning with a lead off single by Megan Dougherty. Two outs later, with a runner on second base, Annalise Campbell delivered a run home on a single with two strikes on her. The third and game ending out proved to be an elusive catch for Mt. Rainier as errors on an infield grounder and pop up plus Isabelle McCarty's RBI single produced three additional runs and a 4-4 draw that forced the extra inning.

With two outs in the top of the eighth inning the Rams were in business following a walk to Sophie Hilsen and Natasha Ricci's single to right field. The threat ended on an infield ground out.

In the home half of the inning, Fulmore KO'd the first batter on a three-pitch strike out, but an infield throwing error and a misplayed ball on a bunt set up Campbell for a sliced pop fly, run-scoring single just beyond the Ram first baseman, ending the struggle in the favor of Thomas Jefferson.

"It's just fundamentals." said Mt. Rainier's Orion Schade who batted 4-for-4 including two doubles and two RBI. "It takes confidence in ourselves and we can pull it through. I hit well, today because I just took my time and relaxed. I felt well at the plate, today."

For six innings, the entire Mt. Rainier team seemed to feel well.
Fulmore escaped a pair of Thomas Jefferson threats in her first six innings of shut out ball.

In the second inning, the Raiders had two runners on base with two before Fulmore struck out the next two batters.

The third inning crisis came by way of an lead off triple followed by an infield single and base on balls for a bases loaded jam. The next out were a bunt that ended up with a force out at home. Fulmore then smoked the next two batters for swinging strikes to calm the rising tide.

Schade slammed a single from the MR lead off spot in the fourth inning to send Sarah Yarasloski to the plate. The fifth-spot Ram hitter timed a pitch perfectly to slam a rising hit that kept climbing to easily clear the left field fence.

It was Schade who added a third Ram tally on a run-scoring single in the fifth inning while also doubling home the fourth Mt. rainier run in the top of the seventh.

Fulmore closed out the game, allowing six hits and striking out 14 Raider batters.

Campbell paced Jefferson with a 3-for-5 batting afternoon including a triple and a pair of runs batted in.

Rocky Hale earned the mound win for Jefferson by pitching the first five innings and returning to pitch the eighth, allowing five of the seven Mt. Rainier hits but striking out seven batters. Freshman Kayla Gaertner pitched the sixth and seventh innings for TJ.

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