Griz Sweep Doubleheader in First Ever Home Games (Photo Gallery)

By SAM WALDORF for Gogriz.com | Photos by WILLIAM MUNOZ

The Montana Griz went 2-0 in their first ever home games as a program this Sunday at the Frenchtown softball complex.

Montana dominated North Idaho College 11-1 in its first game of the day, and grinded out a 6-4 win over Carroll College later in the day.

“Whenever teams are facing Division I teams, they are going to be motivated to play,” head coach Jamie Pinkerton said.

In the first game against NIC, Montana started the game off strong.

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The Griz loaded the bases up, after Gabriella Martinez, MaKenna McGill and Bethany Olea reached base.

That brought up freshman Lexie Brenneis, who took advantage of the situation. Brenneis sent one sailing over the fence, putting Montana up 4-0.

The Griz would continue to score, adding three runs in the third inning and two more in the fourth. Tori Lettus had two RBI’s in the game as did McKenzie Phillips.

Montana out hit NIC eight to two.

Carli Riordan got the win against NIC, allowing only two hits in five innings pitched. Riordan also struck nine batters.

Riordan said they were very strong in all aspects in the first game.

But the second game was a different story.

After taking an early 1-0 lead, Carroll stormed back with two runs in the top of the third inning.

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“We made some mistakes that we can’t make,” Pinkerton said. “A couple of balls that should have been fielded, and a couple of base running errors.”

Senior Kenzie Cole got the start for Montana against Carroll, but assistant coach Melanie Meuchel said it just wasn’t her day.

“She was putting the ball where she needed to, but they were just putting the ball over somebody every time,” Meuchel said. “That was unfortunate, but I thought she did a good job trying to fight through that.”

With Carroll’s offense succeeding against Cole, Montana sent in Riordan to calm the storm.
Riordan completely shut down Carroll, allowing only the inherited runners she got from Cole to score.

“Its good that they were challenged today,” Meuchel said. “It’s good to see them fight through it, and it is good to know we have some depth.”

With Riordan controlling the game on the defensive side, it gave the Griz the opportunity to get their offense going.

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With the game tied at 4-4 going into the sixth inning Montana was looking for a spark, and Delene Colburn was that spark.

Colburn ripped one over the fence giving Montana the 6-4 lead, and the victory.

“I just told the ladies to bide their time, and keep executing, and we would eventually push a couple across,” Pinkerton said. “Right now they are showing this ability to come from behind and you can’t beat that. I like the way our kids battled.”

Montana’s next games will be next Saturday in Frenchtown. The Griz will face Columbia Basin at 1:15 p.m. and Williston State at 3:30 p.m.

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