EVANSVILLE, Ind. - The No. 22 SVSU Softball team opened 2017 Midwest Regional play on Thursday (May 11) afternoon, facing the University of Indianapolis Greyhounds in the opening game of the tournament. Saginaw Valley entered as the No. 3 regional seed while UIndy is the No. 6 seed.
In what was a pitchers' dual that went scoreless through the first seven innings, the Carinals responded to an Indy two-run home run in the top of the 8th with a three-run shot in the home half to secure a 3-2 win.
The game featured just a single hit through seven innings, coming on an infield single from Indy in the fourth inning. Neither team could capitalize on the few scoring opportunities that presented throughout and the game went into the 8th inning, where the excitement would ensue.
The Hounds had a single and stolen base to set up a runner in scoring position. Then, Indy's Natalie Lalich hit a two-run home run to left field, giving the visiting team the 2-0 edge.
It would set the stage for SVSU, which had been hitless through seven innings of play. After Meredith Rousse drew a walk with one out, Aubree Mouthaan hit a hard infield single off the diving shortstop's glove, giving the Cardinals runners on first and second with one out. Courtney Reeves dug-in the box next with an opportunity to put some runs on the board. That she did, taking a 2-1 pitch and driving a line shot over the right center fence, scoring Rousse and Mouthaan for the game-winning home run.
The long ball was Reeves's 13th of the season, which moves her all alone atop for the single season record at Saginaw Valley.
The NCAA postseason victory marks the first for the Cardinals since the 2011 season and the first career NCAA Division II postseason victory for head coach Todd Buckingham.
Inside the Boxscore
- Reeves was 1-4 with the home run and three RBI.
- Mouthaan had the other hit for SVSU, adding a walk and run scored.
- Becky Corbett walked twice in the game.
- Meredith Rousse walked and scored a run as well.
- Samantha Willman was solid in the circle once again, working the complete game while allowing two runs on just three hits. She improved to 20-6 on the season while striking-out six batters.
No. 3 Saginaw Valley will face host and No. 2 regional seed University of Southern Indiana on Friday. First pitch is set for 1:00 p.m. EDT at the USI Softball Field. The Screaming Eagles are coming off a 5-1 opening game victory over Grand Valley State. SVSU and USI met earlier this season at the Midwest Region Crossover Tournament in Evansville, with the Cardinals coming out ahead by a 4-3 score on February 26.
Watch the game-winning home run below...
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