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RAIDER ROUNDUP: SOU drops two vs. Northwest

BELLEVUE, Wash. — Southern Oregon’s regular-season title hopes took a major blow as the No. 8-ranked Raiders lost their first Cascade Conference series since 2019 on Friday against Northwest (Wash.) at Bellevue College Field.

The Eagles swept by scores of 4-2 and 11-6, getting a complete-game gem from Bella King in Game 1 and peppering eight hits while taking advantage of five walks and two costly late errors in Game 2. They stopped a 22-game head-to-head losing streak against SOU, improving to 10-22 overall and 7-12 in the CCC.

The Raiders (27-9, 11-5), who’d won five straight and eight of their last nine coming into the day, dropped to fourth place in the standings.

Game 1 followed an unwelcome trend, becoming their fourth loss in five CCC series-opening games. Their only offense was generated by solo home runs from Riley Donovan, her league-leading 11th of the season, and Piper Love, her third. The Eagles gave King a lead with three runs in the third. Emily Barry drove in one during the rally and later added a home run in the fifth.

The Raiders came alive with three runs in their first at-bat of Game 2 — getting RBI singles from Love and Lindsey Stripling — but gave five back in the bottom of the inning. Stripling hit another run-scoring single in the sixth to trim NU’s lead to 7-6 before the Eagles delivered the knockout with four runs in the bottom half, three of which were unearned.

Madisyn Leffle and Jordan Dippel, the first two batters in the NU lineup, totaled one hit, two walks and three runs scored apiece. Barry drove in three more and Jessica Nunes had two RBI, making a winner of Sydney Maurer after five four-hit frames in relief.

Donovan, Love and Phelicty Fa’aita led the Raiders with three hits each on the day.

Track & Field

SOU PRODUCES CCC QUALIFIERS: At San Francisco, Southern Oregon’s Alex Harbert-Castro recorded a 40-second personal best in the 5,000 meters and was one of six Raiders who put up Cascade Conference Championship-qualifying times at the Mike Fanelli Track Classic.

Harbert-Castro finished in 14 minutes 56.43 seconds to finish 58th of 166 runners in the 5K at San Francisco State’s Cox Stadium, missing the NAIA ‘B’ standard by just six seconds in his first attempt of the season. In 85th place, Isaac Fernandez posted a five-second PR in 15:14.79.

Four Raider women’s runners hit the CCC standard in their event season debuts: in the 5K, Lauren Forster (18:19.01), Maya Smith (18:34.55) and Sydnee Kizziar (18:34.55); and in the 1,500, Sarah Mauk (4:53.64).

Five more Raiders were in action in Eugene for University of Oregon’s Hayward Premiere. No season-bests were recorded, but Adam O’Brien was 10th of 16 in the men’s pole vault with a mark of 14 feet 5 ¼ inches and KiAshe Hobby was 16th of 24 in the women’s hammer at 149-3. In the men’s hammer, Matthew O’Henley (168-6) was 20th, Wayne Garcia (166-8) was 21st and Conner Johnson (153-8) was 24th.