Jacey Tomhave blasted a go-ahead home run to help lead the Mustangs to a 6-3 win against Dordt.
Morningside stayed alive with a 6-3 victory against Dordt in Wednesday’s loser’s bracket game of the GPAC Softball Tournament in Crete, Neb.
The Mustangs, who opened the double-elimination tourney with a 1-0 loss against Northwestern earlier in the day, will take a 24-19 record into a rematch with the Red Raiders in Thursday’s loser’s bracket final slated for a noon start. The winner will face Doane, the tournament host and the GPAC’s regular season champion, for the championship of the Doane bracket and the right to meet the winner of the Midland bracket in Saturday’s GPAC Tournament Championship Series.
Morningside rallied from a 3-2 sixth inning deficit to eliminate Dordt. Jacey Tomhave delivered the key hit with a two-run home run with one out in the bottom of the sixth to put the Mustangs in front 4-3. Tomhave’s blast, her fourth circuit clout of the season, came with McKenzie Anderson on base after she had reached on an error to start the inning. The Mustangs tacked on a pair of insurance runs when Taylor Daas was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and on a wild pitch.
Morningside had taken a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning when Mara Amsberry hit a two-out single that keep the inning alive and set the stage for back-to-back RBI doubles by Elin Landgren and Daas.
The Defenders closed within 2-1 on a fourth inning RBI single by Michal Hoogland and then took a 3-2 lead on a two-run double by Ashton Beaird in the fifth.
Daas had a double and single to pace a nine-hit Morningside offensive attack. The Mustangs also had extra base hits from Tomhave with a home run and Landgren with a double.
Winning pitcher Faith Schmidt weathered eight hits over the first six innings to get the win. She walked one and struck out three. Carlie Maasz relieved Schmidt to start the seventh inning and retired all three batters she faced for her third save of the season.
Schmidt pitched a no-hitter, but it wasn’t enough to prevent a 1-0 loss against Northwestern in Wednesday’s tournament opener.
Schmidt walked only one batter and struck out five while suffering the hard luck loss. Schmidt, who was 7-1 with a 1.43 earned run average in her last nine outings leading into the contest, has allowed only five hits in her last 19.1 innings pitched.
Northwestern’s Kayla Tindall was impressive as well as she shut out the Mustangs on three hits, yielding fourth inning singles to Landgren and Anderson and a seventh inning single to Tomhave. Tindall walked one and struck out three.
Northwestern scored the only run of the game in the bottom of the third inning when Monserrat Figueroa led off with a walk and scored on a two-out error.
Tindall retired the Mustangs’ first nine batters of the game before Landgren led off the fourth inning with a single for the game’s first hit.
The Mustangs failed to capitalize on a Northwestern error in the top of the fifth when Tomhave reached on an error to start the inning and advanced to second with one out after a sacrifice by Anna Milone.
The game ended when the Mustangs had the tying runner at second base in the top of the seventh after Tomhave hit a one-out single and was sacrificed to second by Milone.