Bat attack sparks Blue Devils win

Wa-Hi knocks out 13 hits in the 7-1 win over Pendleton Thursday.

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Wa-Hi left-fielder Mariah Gerling lunges to come up with the catch on a foul ball as the Pendleton batter looks over her shoulder on her way to first base.

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Wa-Hi shortstop Andrea Hamada throws to first base to send a Pendleton runner out during the Blue Devils' 7-1 win over Pendleton on Thursday.

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Wa-Hi picher Alyson Ambler keeps her gloved hand up during her wind-up for a pitch to a Pendleton batter.

WALLA WALLA - Wa-Hi rode the pitching of Alyson Ambler and a 13-hit attack - led by the three apiece by Hope Klicker and Trae Payne - to a 7-1 victory over Pendleton in non-conference softball action Thursday afternoon at Murr Sports Park.

Ambler struck out 15 batters and threw just 90 pitches - 70 strikes - in the seven-inning contest.

"Alyson's throwing the ball well," Wa-Hi coach Jerry Humphreys said. "She was dominant (and) threw a great game. They couldn't handle anything she was throwing."

The Blue Devils improved to 5-0 after manhandling the Buckaroos, who entered play as the top-ranked Class 5A squad in the latest Oregon School Activities Association poll released this week.

Wa-Hi broke out on top on an RBI single by Klicker in the first inning.

Pendleton tied it in the top of the third before the Blue Devils tallied twice in the last half of the frame.

Libbie Jimenez led off with a triple and scored on an Andrea Hamada squeeze bunt.

Klicker made it 3-1 with her fourth home run of the season - a two-out bullet that easily cleared the left-field fence.

"She definitely hit the ball hard," Humphreys said. "We hit the ball well. Even the outs we made - a majority of the balls were hit hard."

Wa-Hi played add-on and completed its scoring in the fourth inning. Hamada drilled an RBI double into the right-center alley for the first run of the stanza.

Ambler ripped a run-producing single to center, and scored just seconds later after Pendleton center fielder Shea Lindsey mishandled her hard shot.

A Payne RBI single to left capped the scoring.

"The kids made great adjustments at the plate," Humphreys said. "I'm happy with the effort all the way around.

"The kids are playing great. It was nice to play well, hit well, and pitch well."

The Blue Devils open Big Nine Conference play with a road doubleheader against Eisenhower at 2:30 p.m. today.

Wa-Hi 7, Pendleton 1

Pendleton 001 000 0 - 1 5 1

Wa-Hi 102 400 x - 7 13 0

Jones, Crawford (5) and Spencer; Ambler and Klicker.

HR - Wa-Hi, Klicker.

Hits - Pendleton: Martinez, Olivera, Jones, Spencer, McGrath; Wa-Hi: Payne 3, Klicker 3, Hamada 2, Gerling 2, Ambler, Jimenez, Hill.

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