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Pitching, long ball key Raiders' sweep

EUGENE — Southern Oregon received two more crisp pitching performances and broke out its big bats during Tuesday's 4-2 and 11-2 softball sweep of Northwest Christian in Cascade Conference play at James Park.

Raider pitchers Sydney White and Victoria Mackey held the Beacons to eight hits on the day, and SOU launched three home runs for the first time this season in Game 2 after coming into the day with just seven all year.

White took a no-hitter into the fifth inning of her complete game, and Mackey was the beneficiary of long balls from Tyler Burke, Alexa Gonzalez and Megan Winton as the Raiders brought the mercy rule into effect after five innings of play.

SOU (27-11 overall, 13-5 CCC), which went from 16th to 25th in Tuesday's NAIA Top 25 poll, has won 10 of 12 games going into Saturday's twin bill at first-place Oregon Tech.

White (10-5)has pitched five straight complete games and allowed two earned runs or less in all of them. She allowed four hits and one earned run over seven innings with a season-high nine strikeouts and three walks. Kiara Vasquez's solo homer with one out in the seventh broke up her shutout.

The Raiders had just five hits in the opener, four of which were split between Kelsey Randall and Rebecca Velasquez.

Gonzalez got the Raiders going in Game 2 with a first-inning solo homer — her first of the season — before they added four runs in the second and six more in the third. In the second, Abigail Lund's RBI double and Taylor Martinez's RBI single made it 3-0, and Burke pulled a two-run homer to right — also her first.

Winton's second homer of the season was a three-run blast with no outs in the third, and Burke tacked on a two-run double later in the inning to give her a four-RBI day. Martinez joined Burke with two hits in the game, including a double.

Mackey (12-2) allowed four hits and two earned runs in five innings. She struck out four without a walk.