Cherry Creek, helped by the clutch pitching of Alex Gruitch, bunched together only five hits in its Centennial League game at Arapahoe on Aug. 24 but still walked off with a 7-0 victory over the Warriors.
Arapahoe committed six errors in the game and the opportunistic Bruins made the Warriors pay for their mistakes.
Three Warrior errors in the top of the first inning helped the Bruins score four unearned runs and the other three Creek runs in the game were also unearned.
“They made a couple mistakes and we took advantage of it and from there it just kind of went our way the rest of the game,” said first-year Creek coach Pablo Severtson.
“We had six errors so we helped them a lot,” added Arapahoe coach Jeannie Maney. “We've just got to clean up some stuff on defense.”
Gruitch, a senior right-hander, allowed four hits in seven innings, struck out five but also walked five. which made her have to work out of some potentially dangerous situations.
Arapahoe left 17 runners on base during the game and had runners on second and third in the second inning with nobody out, but Gruitch got a strikeout, weak pop out to first and a ground out to retire the side.
The Warriors had at least one runner on base in the next five innings but failed to score.
“I feel like I pitched well,” said Gruitch. “I laid everything out on the table and I feel like I tried my hardest. I don't think I really let the walks get to my head. I really focused on my breathing and focused on what I could do and try to get the outs we really needed. When it was a really tough situation I just focused a lot. I just kept to myself and believed I could get the out.”
Severtson liked the grit of Gruitch as the Bruins won for the third time in first three games of the season.
“She had great stuff from start to finish and was still throwing hard,” he said. “I would say she got effectively wild towards the end and it still worked. She threw a lot of strikes and did a great job of competing. When you have pitching like that you are always going to have a chance to be in the game.
“We're off to a good start and hopefully we can keep the ball rolling.”
Arapahoe saw its record dip to 1-2 after the loss.
“We've got to work on some stuff.,” said Maney. “With the shortened season, we don't have those non-league games we used as warmup games going into league so there's just a lot of pressure because everything counts. We've just got to relax and play. We have some good talented kids. We'v just got to get them to communicate and work together.”
Sophomore Hadley Selman had two hits for Creek and also stole a base. Arapahoe's starting pitcher, junior Shayna Grossman, had two of the four Warrior hits.
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