Lakeridge rallies and moves up to No. 4 in the state

The Lakeridge softball team stayed hot as it opened up league play Monday, topping Canby on the road in a back-and-forth affair.

The Pacers, who have claimed the No. 4 ranking in the state by the OSAA, outlasted the Cougars 7-6, beating a team that figures to contend for the league title this year.

It was a team effort all around as Lakeridge had contributions up and down the line-up, rattling off 12 hits in the game.

The Pacers got up early in the game, scoring three runs in the first inning with Alicia Loiler acting as the catalyst.

Loiler would finish with three hits in the game and an RBI.

That lead would hold up until the bottom of the fourth inning. Pitcher Chayse Pearson was cruising and had two outs in the inning as she looked to preserve the 3-0 lead.

However, a pair of errors allowed Canby to score five runs all with two outs as the Cougars grabbed the lead.

After the inning, coach Mike McCormack gathered the team in the dugout to regroup.

“These girls have goals and I just challenged them,” McCormack said.

The talk worked as the Pacers quickly rallied for three runs in the fifth inning. Annie Griffin had a pair of hits for Lakeridge in the game while Erica Saporito and Pearson also knocked in runs.

Canby wouldn't go away, tying the game again at 6-6 in the bottom of the fifth.

Then, in the top of the sixth inning, Saporito, Griffin and Bailey Morris all reached to load the bases and an RBI groundout plated the go-ahead run.

Pearson stayed strong on the mound, finishing the complete game by keeping the Cougars at bay for the remainder of the game.

“She's been so solid for us and just wants to go out and win every day,” McCormack said.

Lakeridge has just two losses this season and takes on Clackamas Friday.

“Our confidence is huge right now. We've never been the program with the target on our back before,” McCormack said.

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