Lady Seasiders softball lost their first two games 4-2 and 7-3 on opening day in a double-header against the visiting Western Washington Vikings at the BYU-Hawaii softball fields on Feb. 7.
“The girls played really hard today and they battled. I was really proud of their toughness and dedication today,” said BYUH head softball coach Lominga Latu.
Both games were decided in the final innings with the second game needing an extra inning before the Vikings scored the deciding runs.
The team’s pitchers were led by Meghan Wantz who had five strikeouts in the first game. She only gave up four runs on nine hits, finding ways to get out of tough situations stranding five Vikings during the game. However, two home runs by the Vikings ended up being the deciding factor for the game.
The Seasiders initially held a two-run lead after the first inning but were unable to score again as Vikings pitcher Shearyna Labasan found her zone recording nine strikeouts.
“This other team was great, but you have to remember this was their fifth and sixth games of the seasons. We came out and competed with a team who has had a few games to work out the kinks. A really good team,” said Latu.
The Seasiders appeared to be faring better in the second game of the day. Due to rain delays, the game seemed to be just as much about ending before the sun went down on the lightless fields as it was about winning.
The Seasiders once again held a two-run lead after infielder Liz Talataina knocked a pitch from the Vikings over the fence for a homerun scoring Alanna Anderson.
“It felt good because last season I really struggled at the plate after doing well my freshman year, so it felt good to get a homerun today,” said Talataina, a junior from California majoring in elementary education.
The Vikings chipped away at the lead though tying it up in the fourth inning. In the top of the sixth inning, the Vikings scored a single run to break the tie but the Seasiders answered back when Alexa Barrett was able to single scoring Alanna Anderson which tied the game up again.
A controversial call occurred when a BYUH runner was called out on an interference play. The play called back what would have been the deciding run. The Seasiders would later give up a key homerun in the extra inning.
“My friend, Alanna, was a stud. It was fun to see her go three for three in hitting,” said Bradley Minton, a junior from California majoring in exercise and sport science. “They were great games today, though. The girls played well and it was fun to see them play competitively and get out of a couple jams.”