SMSU SOFTBALL: SMSU gets tripped up in doubleheader against Tampa

TAMPA, Fla. – After keeping with the Tampa Spartans for the first five innings of the second game of the day, the Southwest Minnesota State University softball team saw the Spartans string together six runs in the bottom of the fifth on Tuesday afternoon for the 8-0 win and the sweep over the Mustangs at Naimoli Family Stadium in Tampa, Florida.

Southwest Minnesota State dropped the first game 7-1 to the Spartans.

In the third day of play for SMSU down in Florida, the Mustangs has faced three tough teams from the Sunshine State Conference, with Tampa being no exception.

Tampa returned to the field after sweeping No. 10 Florida Tech this past Saturday. No. 10 FIT swept SMSU the night before.

SMSU, now 4-6, had six hits, two errors, and four left on base in game one and four hits, one error, and five runners left on base in game two.

Tampa totaled 25 hits in the two games advanced to 14-9 overall.

Game 1

Alex Reak led the Mustangs going 2 for 3 with one run.

The Spartans opened the game with an early lead scoring two in the bottom of the first inning. With two runners on base, the Spartans singled to bring in the first run of the game. Before the end of the first, the Spartans walked with bases loaded to finish the inning with a 2-0 lead.

Tampa returned in the second to advance the lead with a single to right to put up three runs after three complete.

SMSU held Tampa at bay in the third as the Mustang defense forced Tampa to go three up, three down.

Tampa earned two more runs in the fourth and fifth for a 5-0 lead before SMSU went on the board in the top of six from a single from Maddyson Schliinz scored on a single to left field to score Alex Reak. Reak had singled followed by a bunt from Lileya Kebos for two runners on base. The Mustangs stranded two to complete the top of the sixth trailing 5-1.

Megan Cull (2-2) started in the circle for her second loss this season. Cull threw the complete game with three strikeouts and had four walks.

Tampa’s senior pitcher Makaleigh Dooley picked up her 11th win of the season to improve to 11-5 after nine strikeouts and only allowing six hits.

In the bottom of 6, strung together two more runs to finish with a six-run lead.

Game 2

The Mustangs had four hits with one error and five runners left on base, while

Abbie Decker, Grote, Reak, and Kebos all led the Mustangs with one hit.

SMSU kept Tampa to only two runs until the bottom of the fifth when they would end the game early.

The Mustangs looked to go on the board in the third as Emma Grote singled to third base with Abbie Decker and Lileya Kebos already on base. With bases loaded and only one out, the Mustangs failed to bring them in as Bailey Johnson hit into a double play to end the inning.

The Spartans came back in the bottom of the fifth to advance lead to 6-0 after three consecutive hits would string together four runs with two outs on the board.

The Spartans loaded the bases again to bring in the final two runs needed with a single to right field to end the game in five innings.

Athena Golling (2-3) allowed only one walk but Golling, a pitcher who tied her career-high 11 strikeouts earlier this season facing Bemidji, was unable to strike out the Spartans.

Southwest Minnesota State will conclude the spring break trip today with a double header at Eckerd at 4 and 6 p.m. CDT.

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