Beaverton — No matter how far you are down, it isn’t over until its over. Oregon Red Heat faced Bandits Fastpitch in the 16A USA of Oregon Championship on Sunday afternoon, after Bandits Fastpitch knocked off the Hillsboro Diamondbacks in an elimination game earlier in the afternoon.
These teams met in Round 1 on Friday, with the Red Heat coming out victorious 4-3 in that battle. The Oregon Red Heat then knocked off OR Blaze Gold East 16A East 10-3 and beat the Hillsboro Diamondbacks 5-2 to advance to the championship game on Sunday. Bandits Fastpitch built a 3-0 lead in the title game behind a home run and a couple of nice outfield knocks, but Oregon Red Heat battled back with three runs in the bottom of the sixth to tie it entering the seventh inning.
After retiring the side in the top of the seventh, Oregon Red Heat put a runner on first base with two outs in the inning, as Natasha Stubbs entered the batters box. After battling the entire at-bat, Stubbs explains her mindset in the final AB, “I was nervous at first. I grabbed my friend’s bat because she hits dingers off of it so I was like, “I’ll grab her bat and see what happens,” and I ended up hitting a ball she would hit.” Stubbs bomb to right field clinched it for the Red Heat, who went on to win 4-3 in walk-off fashion to win the 16A USA of Oregon Championship.
Stubbs discussed her emotions after delivering such a clutch hit, “Its great, this is what I have always dreamed about. I had a dream about this when I was playing against the Diamondbacks, and this is exactly what I was dreaming about. This is the first time I’ve actually hit the ball without slapping because I’m normally a slapper, and I hit that ball the way I did.”