With Kaycee Cuzick dominating in the circle, the Baker softball team blanked Heppner/Ione 5-0 on Monday, April 25, at the Sports Complex, ending a four-game losing streak.

On a day with rain threatening, Cuzick allowed just five hits and struck out 12 Mustang batters. She walked only one.

“Kaycee did a great job in the circle, threw lots of strikes,” Baker coach Sonny Gulick said. “She had a 9-pitch inning.”

Cuzick threw a first-pitch strike to 19 of the 27 batters she faced, and 70 of her 101 pitches were strikes. She set the Mustangs down in order in the second, third and sixth innings.

Several Heppner/Ione batters bunted to try to reach base, but the Baker defense was solid.

One bunt in the third inning even popped straight to Cuzick’s glove for an out.

Baker, which was plagued by errors in losing both games of a doubleheader to La Grande on April 22, didn’t commit an error against Heppner/Ione.

The Mustangs had only one miscue.

“That’s a team that we handled pretty well earlier in the season and they have clearly gotten a lot better, but I don’t think we gave them our best effort today,” Gulick said.

Baker opened the season on March 17 by sweeping the Mustangs, 13-10 and 16-0, at Heppner.

In Monday’s rematch, Baker had eight hits.

“It was definitely rough at the plate, but we had a few people that had a good day,” Gulick said. “Kiley Jo Aldrich had a good game, Brooklyn Rayl hit the ball well and Emrie Osborn did a good job of getting onto base for us.”

Aldrich, Baker’s leadoff hitter, went 3 for 4, including a double, and drove in one run.

Rayl, batting second, went 2 for 4 with a double and two RBIs. Osborn was 1 for 1 and drew two walks.

Baker took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first when Aldrich doubled and came home on a wild pitch.

The Bulldogs added another run in the third on Rayl’s RBI single, and boosted the lead to 3-0 on Rayl’s RBI double in the fifth.

Baker added two insurance runs in the sixth, the first via an error on Te’ygan Coley’s pop up, the second on Aldrich’s single.

The Bulldogs return home for a league doubleheader against Mac-Hi on Friday, April 29. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. Baker lost both games of a doubleheader to the Pioneers at Milton-Freewater on April 6, by scores of 10-9 and 11-8.

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