Western wakes up, wins title Doves top Bulldogs in City-Wide, 4-3 Softball

May 27, 1993|By Kevin Eck | Kevin Eck,Contributing Writer

After watching her team leave four runners in scoring position in the first two innings of yesterday's City-Wide championship game, Western catcher Kim Aviles decided it was time for an impromptu team meeting.

"I told them we were looking sorry and limp," she said. "They weren't into the game and they weren't focused. Once we had that talk, they all realized we have to start scoring or we're not going to win."

Aviles inspired Western with her bat as well as her words. She went 3-for-4 with a triple and two RBI as the host Doves (15-3) defeated Southern (16-2), 4-3, to win their third consecutive City-Wide title.

For the third straight year, it was right-hander Tracy Gruzs who pitched Western to the title.

Gruzs had a perfect game for 3 1/3 innings and took a no-hitter into the seventh. She finished with a one-hitter, allowed one earned run and struck out eight.

The win improved her career record against the Bulldogs in the City-Wide playoffs to 5-0. Western swept Southern in two games in the previous two seasons when there was a best-of-three format.

Gruzs, coming off a tough 1-0 loss to Dulaney in the regional playoffs on Friday, said it was difficult to get motivated yesterday.

"I think with everybody it seemed like it was over last week, and then we had to come back and get back into it," said Gruzs, who went 2-for-4 with a walk and two runs scored. "It was hard to do that, especially because I think we played real well against Dulaney."

Western ended a string of 12 scoreless innings in the third when Rachel Pedersen (2-for-3, RBI) hit a two-out RBI single.

The Doves extended their lead to 3-0 in the fourth. One-out singles by Jamie Allen and Gruzs and a walk to Heather Campbell loaded the bases for Aviles, who lined an RBI single to left field.

Anne Phillips followed with a run-scoring fielder's choice. Kyndra Bolden (3-for-3) then doubled down the left-field line, but Aviles was thrown out trying to score.

Aviles' RBI triple in the sixth made it 4-0 and gave the Doves an insurance run they would need.

After allowing just one runner through six innings, Gruzs ran into some trouble in the seventh. Tracy Schichting, who had ended Gruzs' bid for a perfect game with a walk in the fourth, led off the inning with another walk.

Jen Cadden then reached on catcher's interference, and Kim Thomas followed with a two-run double -- the Bulldogs' only hit -- to cut Western's lead to 4-2 and bring the tying run to the plate.

But Gruzs retired Shannon Treebs on a grounder to third and Randie Mondshour on a run-scoring fly out to right field before striking out Shawna Taylor to end the game.

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