HERMISTON - Despite the fact that Hermiston starting pitcher Candice Castro gave up just five hits and a walk Friday to The Dalles-Wahtonka, the Bulldogs dropped their Intermountain Conference opener 4-1.
Castro, who was tagged with the loss, threw all seven innings, allowed one earned run and fanned eight batters.
The Bulldogs' defense committed four errors.
"We had a couple errors, but I thought we did pretty well. We still have to improve a lot," Castro said. "The chemistry on this team is great, and we all work really hard everyday."
The Bulldogs (0-1 IMC, 2-8) had two hits, singles by Jessica Bequette and Lacey Ammons.
"I think the girls are at about 85 percent, and if we button up the other 15, we are really looking like a team," Hermiston coach Tom Bequette said. "We need to start hitting in bunches, but I think we caught (The Dalles) off guard a little bit.
"They are supposed to be the No. 1 team in the IMC, but we gave them three unearned runs, so we were right there with them."
Sarah Clark led the way for The Dalles (1-0 IMC), going 3 for 4 at the plate with two doubles and a single.
Clark also recorded the win for the Eagle-Indians in the pitcher's circle. She struck out six, walked none and allowed no earned runs.
"I still feel we are challenging for the IMC title even though it's tough this year," coach Bequette said. "There are four teams playing good softball right now, and we won't be satisfied in that fourth spot."
Notes: Hermiston hosts Crook County next Saturday in an IMC doubleheader. ... The Dalles committed three errors.