Pitching + hitting = sweep
Severinsen leads CMU to 2 wins over Mustangs
When Jessica Severinsen wasn’t popping the glove with fastballs from the pitching circle Saturday, she was popping pitches over the fence for home runs.
The Colorado Mesa senior was a menacing force in the Mavericks’ RMAC softball doubleheader sweep over Western New Mexico at Bergman Field.
The Mavericks won the first game 7-0 and held on for a 9-7 win in the second game.
“It’s definitely important to get these wins this time of the year,” Mesa coach Candace Abrams said. “I wouldn’t necessarily say these are must-wins, but they are definitely important this time of the year.”
Whether it was at the plate or in the circle, Severinsen was a difference-maker for the Mavericks. She hit first-inning home runs in each game and pitched a three-hitter over six innings to pick up the win in Game 1. In Game 2, she pitched the final two innings for the save.
“It’s good to get those wins under our belts and just play our game,” Severinsen said. “The past couple of weeks we’ve been pressing, and it’s nice to finally just play our game.”
After ripping a long home run and a rope to the right-center gap for an RBI double in the second game, Severinsen never saw another pitch in the strike zone. In her next two at-bats, she watched eight pitches not even close to the outside corner.
“I was like, ‘Come on, let me hit the ball,’ ” she said with a laugh. “But I know I have Sarah Phillis and other hitters behind me that can hit.”
CMU (19-17, 18-10 RMAC) took a 2-0 lead in the first on an RBI double by Madelyn Schulz and Severinsen’s deep solo home run to left.
In the third, Makayla Kovac wedged an RBI double into the left-center gap off the fence. Severinsen followed with her laser shot to up the lead to 4-0.
Ashley Pulido was masterful in the pitching circle to pick up the second-game win for the Mavs. She had a no-hitter through four innings but ran into trouble in the fifth when the Mustangs scored three runs.
Mary Othon broke up the no-hitter with a home run, but Pulido got out of the jam with minimal damage, considering the Mustangs had four singles after the home run.
After Severinsen drew her first unintentional-intentional walk, Phillis slapped an RBI single to left to score Nicole Robinson in the bottom of the fifth for a 5-3 lead.
As the leadoff hitter, Robinson scored all three times she was on base.
Up 5-3 in the sixth, the Mavs scored four runs, two from Brooke Ortale and Lindsay Drayer, who darted home on back-to-back wild pitches by Amber Taynton.
Abrams said Severinsen is always a dangerous hitter, and teams are starting to take the bat out of her hands.
“She has the right approach at the plate,” she said. “We talk a lot about having a good approach and knowing the situation.
“Teams are starting to get smarter and are pitching around her to get to someone else in the lineup. But I trust in the girls I have behind her.”
Trailing 9-3, Western New Mexico (12-31, 10-20 RMAC) didn’t go quietly in the final two innings.
The Mavs had played 12 error-free innings, but they made three errors over the final two innings, and all four runs by Western New Mexico off Severinsen were unearned.
In Game 1, she struck out 10 and walked two and she Mesa all the runs it needed with one swing in the first inning with her two-run home run. She had five RBI on the day and has 14 home runs this season.
The Colorado Mesa men picked up a big victory over Metro State in Denver to improve its seeding for the RMAC tournament.
No. 1 singles player Jordan Lyden won 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 to secure the 5-4 team win. Spencer Weinberg won at No. 2 singles, and the Mavericks swept the three doubles matches.
Mesa (11-8, 3-1 RMAC) defeated Montana State-Billings 8-1.
The Mesa women (14-8, 4-0 RMAC) remained in first place with a 9-0 win over Billings and a 7-2 victory over Metro State.
Track & Field
Whitney Rowe and Quincey Pedersen each met NCAA Division II provisional standards to lead the Colorado Mesa women’s team in the Colorado Invitational in Boulder.
Rowe placed third in the 100-meter dash with a provisional time of 11.74 seconds. Pedersen placed fourth in the high jump with a provisional height of 5 feet, 6 inches.
Cathryn Ambler took second place in the women’s 400-meter dash in 56.92 seconds.
The women’s 400 relay team was second behind Adams State in 47.11. The men’s 400 relay was second behind Colorado (41.97).
Grand Junction High School graduate Jonathan Wright of the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs won the men’s 400 with a provisional time of 47.94 seconds.