PHOENIX — The Montana softball team was one strike away from picking up its first win under coach Melanie Meuchel Friday afternoon at the Grand Canyon Kickoff Tournament.
Unfortunately for the Grizzlies, Pacific scored five two-out runs in the top of the seventh to rally for a 7-6 victory. It was the second comeback win of the day for the Tigers (2-0), who scored three in the top of the seventh in their 5-4 victory over Weber State Friday morning.
Montana (0-3) took a 6-2 lead into the seventh thanks to an offense that came to life and the pitching of freshman Tristin Achenbach, who made her collegiate debut. The first two batters in the Pacific seventh reached base, but Achenbach got the next two batters to fly out, putting the Grizzlies on the verge of victory.
Achenbach hit a batter to load the bases, then walked in a run to make it 6-3. With the bases still loaded, Samantha Owen drove a 2-2 pitch over the fence in left field to put Pacific up 7-6.
Megan Walters struck out the side in the bottom half of the inning to pick up the win for the Tigers.
The loss spoiled a nice outing by Montana’s batters, who had hits in five of the first six innings, scoring runs in the second, third and sixth. Ashlyn Lyons went 4 for 4 to lead the way for UM.