The Carroll College softball team dropped a pair of games against the University of British Columbia 3-0 and 11-0 in a neutral-site game at Sunset High School in Beaverton, Oregon, on Sunday. The games propelled UBC into the Cascade Conference tournament while simultaneously putting an end to the season for the Saints.
Carroll struggled to find an offensive rhythm just one day after clinching a series win over conference champion and 15th-ranked Corban. UBC pitcher Lindsey Ogilvie pitched 12 scoreless innings for two complete games, with the second contest ending in the fifth on the mercy rule. She gave up three hits in Game 1 and five in Game 2, but no runs crossed the plate for the Saints.
The Thunderbirds got just enough offense going in the first game to earn a 3-0 victory, but the second game was another story. UBC racked up 11 runs, including five in the fifth, to close out the 11-0, run-rule win and Carroll's season.
There was a third game on the slate if the teams split the first two, but it was abandoned after UBC earned the win.
The losses put the cap on a disappointing, up-and-down season for the Saints. Weather problems from Southern California thunderstorms to a late Montana winter played a huge factor. The team never found a groove, despite four wins over Top 25 teams and series wins over the University of Great Falls, Northwest Christian, and Corban.
"I am proud of this team in battling all season," coach Aaron Jackson said. "We were faced with great adversity from the start of the season, with one day of preseason play and then having to jump right into the tough Cascade Conference schedule. This group gave them a chance to play in the postseason, but after an emotional series at Corban I think we just ran out of gas."
Despite the struggles, Carroll loses just two seniors to graduation and returns the bulk of a formidable pitching rotation and some solid bats.
"The future is bright for us," Jackson said. "We had a number of underclassmen gain great experience, and return a senior class that has been with us since Day 1. The Fighting Saints are not going away any time soon."