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Saints stumble in Northwest semifinals

Douglas puts on a late rally to eliminate top-seeded Mt. Hood CC


PORTLAND — All went well for the Mt. Hood CC softball team on the first day of the Northwest Community Colleges championship tournament, but the team’s final day didn’t turn out as hoped.

The Saints opened the tournament with a 13-2 win over Highline in a game that was cut short in the fifth inning due to the mercy rule. Mt. Hood CC set the tone with a five-run first inning that saw the team bat through the order. Maycee Abendschein blasted a two-run double over the centerfielder and Kylee Gaspar followed with a two-run homer that sailed high over the left-field fence.

Highline never had a chance to catch up, as Mt. Hood starter Ann Marie Guischler struck out the side in the second inning.

The Saints piled on two more runs in their half of the inning with Abendschein knocking an RBI-single into the left-field gap and Jamie Martin drawing a bases-loaded walk.

Teauna Hughes put the game into mercy-rule mode with a grand slam in the fourth inning. She went 4 for 4 in the game, scoring each time she came to the plate.

Mt. Hood knocked off Spokane 8-2 in the second round, breaking out to the lead with a three-run spurt in the second inning. Gaspar led the hitters by going 3 for 3 and scoring three times.

The Saints advanced to the winner’s bracket final with a 3-0 win over South Region rival Clackamas on Saturday. Centennial High graduate Kali VanCleave got it started with a double to open the game before scrambling home on a wild pitch. Heather Jett sprinted home when Clackamas caught a foul ball beyond first base.

Guischler shut down the Cougar bats, surrendering only two hits while striking out seven.

Mt. Hood’s run ended Sunday with a 6-1 loss to No. 2 seed Wenatchee Valley, which broke the game open with a four-run spurt in the fifth inning. The Saints managed only three hits in the game.

The Saints saw their tournament come to an end later in the afternoon with a 5-4 loss to No. 6-seed Douglas in the consolation final. The teams traded the lead twice with Mt. Hood going ahead 4-2 after Courtney McCarthy’s three-run homer in the third inning.

But Douglas rallied back with three runs in the sixth inning, moving ahead on a two-run single by Iris Chow.

The Saints went down 1-2-3 in its final at-bats.

Wenatchee Valley defeated Douglas 6-5 in Monday’s championship game.