Coyotes split games with Humboldt

Freshman Courtney Wilhelms pitched a complete game and helped her own cause with two hits, driving in a run and scoring one Friday as Cal State San Bernardino knocked off Humboldt State, 4-2, in the opener of a CCAA conference softball doubleheader.

        The Lumberjacks, ranked No. 8 in the nation, No. 1 in the West Region and sitting in first place in the CCAA, came back to win the nightcap 3-2 on a two-run homer by Nikki Ketteringham and a run-scoring sacrifice fly by Marissa Slattery.

        The Coyotes are 22-32 on the season and 13-17 in the CCAA while HSU is 34-15 overall and 21-9 in the CCAA. The same two teams play the final conference doubleheader of the conference season at 11 a.m. Saturday at Coyote Softball Park on campus.

        In game one, HSU took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on an RBI single by Geneva Perrine, but the Coyotes responded with two runs off Lumberjacks pitcher Gracie Perez (16-5) on  RBI singles by Priscilla Curiel and Wilhelms.

        HSU tied the game in the fifth as pinch runner Sammi Gilbert scored on an error, but CSUSB regained the lead 3-2, in the bottom of the fifth as the Coyotes loaded the bases and Tori Beaudette scored on a wild pitch by Perez. CSUSB added an insurance run in the sixth on a double by Wilhelms who then scored on a single to left by Maggie Karros.

        The Lumberjacks loaded the bases in the top of the seventh with one out but Wilhelms got out of the jam on two fly ball outs to left. The Jacks stranded 12 runners and out-hit the Coyotes 8-6.

        In game two, CSUSB jumped on top 1-0 in the bottom of the first on Ashley Collinwood’s sixth home run of the season off HSU starter Nichole Parada and made it 2-0 in the second on Jacquelyn Holtzclaw’s RBI single. Perez came in to relieve Parada in the inning with the bases loaded and got Collinwood to hit into a force play at home to end the inning.

        Perez then pitched solidly, allowing just one hit while striking out six in 5.1 innings to earn her 16th win of the season against five losses. Debbie Shisler went 4.2 innings, giving up Ketteringham’s two run blast that tied the game.

        Humboldt pushed across the winning run in the sixth on singles by Caitlin Klug and Ashley Oltjenbruns, a wild pitch that advanced both runners and a sacrifice fly to left center by Slattery that brought home Klug. Perez retired the side in order in the sixth and struck out Curiel with two out and a runner on in the bottom of the seventh to end it.

        Natalie Galletly and Francesca West each had two hits in an 11-hit Jacks attack and HSU stranded 11 runners, running the two for the two games to 23. The Coyotes stranded nine runners. Collinwood was two-for-three for CSUSB.

        Brianne Godfredson (1-4) took the loss after coming on in the top of the sixth.