St. Cloud State 5, USD 3
The Huskies used a four-run sixth inning to come back from a 3-1 deficit to defeat the Coyotes, 5-3, in the opening round of the North Central Conference tournament.
SCSU scored first when Olivia Graham hit a solo HR to center field in the bottom of the second inning.
The Coyotes then answered with two runs in the top of the fourth inning when freshman Tagney Jones (Lincoln, NE) led off with a single to center, advanced to second on a sacrifice and third on a ground out before scoring on a wild pitch. Sophomore Katie Swanson (Omaha, NE) added to the run total when she crossed home after an error by the pitcher.
In the top of the fifth inning, USD added another run when Jones hit an RBI single to center scoring sophomore Krystal Kirwan (Omaha, NE).
In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Huskies scored an unearned run before Graham cranked her second HR of the day, a three-run shot to left field.
The second blast seemed to take the wind out of the Coyotes sails as they were retired in order in the final two innings.
Jones and Kirwan each led South Dakota with two hits.
Jones (8-14) suffered the loss on the mound for USD, who equaled SCSU's hit total with seven, as she pitched a complete game and allowed five runs (four earned) on seven hits. Jones recorded two strikeouts and one base-on-balls.
Lacey Trossbach (17-10) picked up the win as she pitched a complete game and allowed three runs (two earned) on seven hits. Trossbach struck out seven batters and walked two in the contest.
North Dakota 2,
South Dakota 1
UND scored a run in each of the first two innings and held off a late charge by the Coyotes, in the bottom of the seventh inning, to advance in the consolation bracket with a 2-1 victory.
Casie Hanson led off the game with a triple to right center and scored on a passed ball to put UND up early, 1-0.
North Dakota added a run in the second inning when Jessica Price hit a lead-off double to left field and scored on a two-out single by Karen Krane to give UND the eventual game winning run.
The score remained 2-0 until the bottom of the seventh inning when sophomore Abby Poulter (Colfax, IA) hit single through the right side and advanced to second on a wild pitch with one out. Freshman Ashley Weyers (Lincoln, NE) then smacked a double to scored Poulter and bring the Coyotes to within one run. However, the charge would end there as the next two batters were retired in order.
USD outhit their north-border rivals, 6-4, but was unable to mount any scoring threats.
Senior Alisha Yowell (Omaha, NE), pitching her final game in a Coyote uniform, went 1 2/3 innings and allowed two runs (one earned) on four hits and struck out two batters. Tagney Jones pitched the final 5 1/3 innings and allowed no hits while striking out two.
UND's Tara Peterson (14-16) pitched a complete game six-hitter and allowed one earned run while notching 12 strikeouts.