KEIZER — After three innings of big hitting, Pendleton’s 12U little league softball team is off to the state championships.
On Monday, the All-Star softball team took down East Lane/Sheldon in a 16-0 shutout, officially punching their ticket to Wednesday’s state championship game.
Pendleton was quick to show their strength when Melanie Boatman tripled on a line drive to left field for the second at-bat of the game. Boatman scored on the following ground-out, but her team would be far from finished.
Avery Krighaum notched a double on a fly ball to deep center field on her first pitch, and Maddy Lieuallen, Bailey Moore, and Boatman all singled again within the inning. Boatman’s single scored two runs and gave Pendleton an 8-0 lead. She would finish the game with a 2-for-3 performance that put up two runs and a game-best four RBIs.
With Madaline Schumacher pitching, East Lane’s first at-bat was kept short and sweet, as she benched two batters and ended the inning with a groundout to shortstop.
Pendleton followed with a seven-run second inning in which Krighaum, Boatman, Lieuallen, and Reese Furstenherg all hit RBI singles. Boatman and Krighaum combined to give the team a 15-run advantage as they scored on the same wild pitch.
Boatman took to the circle in the bottom of the second, quickly posting back-to-back strikeouts as East Lane continued to be held without a hit.
Ella Sams rounded out Pendleton’s scoring in the top of the third as she crossed home plate on Josie Jenness’s sacrifice fly to right field. The run would call the game in just three innings.
Pendleton finished the game with 12 hits, while East Lane never managed a single one. Krighaum followed Boatman in offense, going 2-for-3 with three runs and three RBIs.
Schumacher tallied two strikeouts, and Boatman followed with three, allowing just one walk along the way. Meanwhile, their East Lane opponents struck out just one batter for the entire game.
The Pendleton All-Stars will vie for the 12U state title on Wednesday in Keizer. Game time is at 6 p.m.