Jordan pitches Mavs into title game
Pasta and an ice bath were Sara Jordan’s reward Friday after the junior pitcher led the Mesa State College softball team into the championship game of the RMAC tournament.
Jordan has pitched all three games of the tournament for the Mavericks, the only remaining undefeated team in the field, including a pair of shutouts.
Friday morning, the Mavericks (23-18) handed fourth-ranked Metro State its fourth loss of the season, 5-1, to move into the winners’ bracket final, where they beat Regis 4-0.
Metro (41-4) came back to win two games in the losers’ bracket, 12-4 over Chadron State and 11-2 over Colorado Mines, and plays Regis (22-27) at 9:30 this morning to determine who will play the championship game at 12:30 p.m. Either would have to beat Mesa State twice to win the RMAC title.
“She’s dealing it,” Mesa State coach Kris Mort said of Jordan (14-9). “She threw really well against Metro, kept them in the park. The one run they did score was a little squibber to Katie’s (Mitchell) right side and she rushed through it trying to get a throw off to the plate and didn’t field it clean.”
Jordan struck out nine against Metro State and the Mavericks scored five runs in the sixth inning to erase the Roadrunners’ 1-0 lead.
Gabi Parra hit a home run to center to lead off the inning and after Jordan singled, Megan Smith hit a home run to right.
Whitney Bailey singled up the middle, chasing Metro starting pitcher Christie Robinson, the RMAC pitcher of the year. Pinch runner JJ Johnson took second on a wild pitch. Ashlee Duffy’s base hit scored Johnson and Lise Pille moved pinch runner Taylor Gross over with a bunt. Lita Romero made it 5-1 with an RBI double down the left field line.
Jordan allowed only one base hit the rest of the way.
“They had a little different pressure against us,” Mort said of the Roadrunners. “They didn’t swing it well against us. We’ll get Sara an ice bath at the hotel and hopefully she can get up (today) and deal it again.”
Mesa scored single runs in the first and third innings against Regis and Dani Vallie singled home two runs in the fourth to give Mesa State enough of a cushion to reach the title game.
“We’re hitting the ball well,” Mort said. “Dani knocked the ball around, (Romero) is hitting it all around the park. We’re bunting a lot more. We’ve played small ball more than we’ve played all year long.”
Mesa’s defense has been solid all weekend behind Jordan.
“We’re playing good defense and selling out. Dani made a great catch on a line drive at her kneecaps, a diving catch against Metro,” Mort said. “We’ve gotten a lot of defensive and offensive breaks, breaks that haven’t gone our way all season.”