The Northwest Missouri State softball team will have to fight to get into the MIAA tournament after dropping two games to Central Oklahoma Sunday losing game one 5-3 and game two 5-4 in extra innings.
Central Oklahoma went up early in game one scoring one run in the first inning and three runs in the third to go up 4-0.
Northwest plated their first run of the game in the top of the fifth inning on a Rachael Schmitz solo home run to left center making the score 4-1.
One inning later, Kristine Labertew hit a sacrifice fly to center field that was deep enough to bring in Candace Miller from third. In the bottom half of the sixth inning the Bronchos were able to get one run back to take a 5-2 lead.
Maddie Jones led off the seventh inning with a double and was pinch ran for by Sara Krysl. Jordan Ereth singled up the middle knocking in Krysl from third for her 14th RBI of the season. That would be it for the comeback as the Bearcats fell 5-3.
Jenna Creger was in the circle for Northwest and was tagged with the loss going 6.0 innings, giving up five earned runs and striking out seven.
The Bearcat offense was off to a quick start in the second game as Ereth scored in the first inning off a fielding error by UCO to go up 1-0.The Bronchos tied it up 1-1 after getting a run across in the bottom of the second.
Northwest answered in the top of the third when Hailee Hendricks was hit by a pitch with bases loaded to put her team back up 2-1. Ereth scored later in the inning off a fielder’s choice by Kristen Uthe to increase their lead to 3-1.
Central Oklahoma was able to tie the game up in the fourth inning with a two run home run. Neither team was able to score as the game went into extra innings.
Kristine Labertew was walked to leadoff the top of the eighth inning and later scored on an error by the shortstop putting her team on top 4-3. Northwest was unable to plate anymore runs in the inning and left the bases loaded.
Kacie Edwards came up in the bottom of the eighth, for the Bronchos, with one out and a runner on first and hit her third home run in two games to give UCO the 5-4 victory.
Abbie Vitosh threw a complete game in a losing effort giving up five hits, five earned runs and striking out four.
The Bearcats went into the double-header Sunday tied for seventh in the MIAA standings and ended the day a half game behind Pittsburg State for the eighth seed. The top eight teams go to the Conference tournament on Thursday in Kansas City, Mo.
Due to rainouts earlier in the season, the Bearcats have a home series against Lincoln Tuesday with first pitched scheduled for 2 p.m. and game two set to follow. Pittsburg State will play their final series Monday against Central Missouri.
— Northwest Media Relations —