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WEB SPECIAL: Jesuit roller coaster ends on a down at FG

Forest Grove's Marissa Reichard strikes out 16 to end Jesuit's year
by: Chase Allgood, PLAYOFF PLAY — Jesuit's Alicia Taylor tries to avoid a tag at second base during her team's May 23 playoff loss at Forest Grove.

FOREST GROVE - With all the ups and downs of Jesuit's softball season, the Crusaders might need a giant dose of Dramamine.

After the huge 'up' of its win over McNary in the first round of the Class 6A state playoffs, Jesuit had an equally precipitous drop in round two, falling 4-0 at Forest Grove High School on May 23.

'It was kind of like how our season went,' Jesuit coach Jim Speciale said of his team's two playoff rounds. 'Every time we had a big high, we'd hit a big low.'

Forest Grove pitcher Marissa Reichard was responsible for the last low, however, stopping the Crusad-ers with a no-hitter that featured just three walks and 16 strikeouts.

'The game plan was to lay off her riseball, but she just kept throwing it and we just kept climbing the ladder with her,' Speciale said.

The loss ended Jesuit's season at 12-18 after a third-place finish in the Metro League, while the Vikings lost to North Medford in Friday's quarterfinals and ended their year at 21-8 after a runner-up finish in the Pacific Conference.

Forest Grove scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the first inning when Reichard led off with a single, then scored on a hit by Natalie Sydenstricker. The Vikings then added an RBI double by Syden-stricker and a run-scoring sacrifice fly by Taylor Schmitt in the third. Reichard added her team's final run when Reichard tripled and scored in the fifth.

'Almost every time we've played Forest Grove, we've won … but then we just went out and didn't do it,' Speciale said. 'We just weren't there.'