There just may be no stopping the Tualatin High School softball team.
West Salem gave it a good shot, but fell way short.
The Timberwolves, scoring four runs in the bottom of the fourth inning, and then two more in the fifth, pulled away to get an 8-3 win over the Titans in a Class 6A state playoff second-round game played May 23 at Tualatin High School.
With the victory, Tualatin the Three Rivers League champion and the No. 1 team in the final OSAA power rankings, improved to 27-0 on the season at that point, while also advancing to the quarterfinal round of the state playoffs. West Salem, the No. 2 team out of the Greater Valley Conference, and the No. 8 team in the power rankings, finished its season with a final record of 19-10.
Tualatin, in the second-round contest, took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Sophomore Bella Valdes drew a walk to lead off the frame. She moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior Ella Hillier and then scored on a double by junior Emily Johansen to give the Wolves the early advantage.
West Salem tied the game with a run in the top of the second inning, but Tualatinanswered that in the bottom of the frame. Sophomore Tia Ridings hit a one-out triple and then scored on a grounder by Valdes to give Tualatin a 2-1 lead.
The Wolves then pulled away in the bottom of the fourth inning, scoring four times. Johansen had the big hit of the frame with a two-run home run. Ridings also had an RBI triple in the inning, plating freshman Taylor Corcoran, and Hillier added an RBI single.
Tualatin got its final two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning, when Hillier singled in both Corcoran and senior Zoe Olivera.
Tualatin, as a team, had nine hits in the victory. Johansen went 2 for 2 at the plate with a home run, a double, two walks, a run scored and three RBIs. Hillier went 2 for 3 with three RBIs. Ridings tripled twice, scored two runs and drove in one. Corcoran went 2 for 3 with two runs scored. Olivera had a hit and a run scored. Valdes drove in a run and scored a run.
Senior Megan Woodward picked up the pitching win. In seven innings of work, she gave up three runs on eight hits, while striking out seven and walking none.
For West Salem, junior Sage Barnes hit a home run.