Raiders stay hot, sweep Hope International


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    SAN JOSE, Calif. — An Allie Stines power surge and a defensive blunder enabled No. 3 Southern Oregon to score the winning runs in the sixth inning twice in a sweep of No. 9 Hope International, 5-3 and 4-3 on Sunday afternoon at Valley Christian High.

    Stines, a junior catcher, provided SOU's first two-homer game since 2017 while going 4-for-4 with four RBI and three runs scored in the opener. After the Royals (8-3) scored twice in the top of the first inning, she led off the bottom half with a solo blast. And with the score tied 3-3 in the sixth, Hannah Wessel set the table with a pinch-hit double and Stines sent a two-out, two-run shot over the fence in center field.

    Gabby Sandoval pitched her fourth complete game to bring her record to 4-1, but she was in a 3-1 hole after Anessa Cepeda's solo home run in the fifth. In the bottom of the inning, Stines singled home Avery Morehead-Hutsell, who had led off with a hit and stole second, and Tayler Walker's two-out single to left chased home Stines to even the score.

    In Game 2, Jamie Ponce's two-run home run tied it up for HIU in the fifth, 3-3. Paige Leeper led off SOU's half of the sixth with a single, and her pinch-runner, Mackenzie Evangelisti, scored the go-ahead run with two outs when Morehead-Hutsell's grounder to third base resulted in an error.

    Lauren Quirke went 3-for-4 with a double and earned the decision with two innings of relief. She gave up Ponce's shot but both runs were unearned. Freshman Jordyn Ragan got her first start, allowing five hits and one run in 3 1/3 innings, and Sandoval recorded the last five outs to pick up her second save.

    Olivia Mackey went 2-for-3 with a run scored and Morehead-Hutsell was 1-for-2 with a run and a walk.

    The Raiders (8-1) have now swept two ranked opponents, having started the season with back-to-back wins against No. 16 Corban.

    They'll play two more doubleheaders before opening their Cascade Conference schedule, starting with William Jessup (Calif.) next Saturday in Rocklin.

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