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April 21, 2008

Walk-off double leads Eagles to second-game win,
Loete breaks USI RBI record in game one loss

Missouri S&T (22-17, 13-7 GLVC): 3, at Southern Indiana (29-21, 12-10 GLVC): 2
-Game 1 Box Score

at Southern Indiana: 5, Missouri S&T: 4
-Game 2 Box Score

EVANSVILLE, Ind.—The University of Southern Indiana softball team split a doubleheader with Missouri University of Science and Technology Monday at the USI Softball Field. The Miners took game one, 3-2, before the Screaming Eagles grabbed a 5-4 victory in game two.

Kristin Eickholt

USI (29-21, 12-10 GLVC) rallied from a 1-0 deficit in game two to tie the score when senior third baseman/pitcher Kristin Eickholt (Van Wert, Ohio) hit a single to drive in senior centerfielder Kirsten Morgan (Oakland City, Indiana).

The Eagles took their first lead of the day by scoring three times off five hits in the fifth inning to take the 4-1 advantage. Morgan and freshman second baseman Dani Finkelstein (Windsor, Colorado) each had RBI singles, while junior shortstop Allyn McKinley (Sullivan, Indiana) had an RBI double to start the scoring.

Missouri S&T (22-17, 13-7 GLVC), however, sent nine players to the plate in the sixth inning and scored three times to tie the contest at 4-4. Eickholt (3-3), who picked up the win, came in to the pitcher's circle in the sixth frame to prevent the Miners from doing any more damage; then blanked Missouri S&T in the seventh inning to set the stage for some unlikely heroics.

Heather Swarts

With two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning, Morgan drew a walk on four straight pitches. Freshman rightfielder Heather Swarts (Gas City, Indiana), who was 0-for-3 in her first three plate appearances, followed by hitting a walk-off double to the rightfield fence that scored Morgan all the way from first base.

The victory put an end to USI's five-game GLVC losing streak and kept its hopes of securing a top-four seed in the upcoming GLVC Tournament alive.

In game one, the Eagles used an Eickholt home run in the bottom of the third inning that tattooed the scoreboard in leftfield and cut the Miner's 2-0 lead in half.

Sara Loete

Sophomore designated player Sara Loete (Pekin, Illinois) hit a two-out single in the fourth inning to drive in senior leftfielder Kathy Wood (Lynnville, Indiana) and tie the contest at 2-2. The RBI not only tied the game, but it gave Loete the school record for RBIs in a single season (51).

The Miners, however, scored a run in the top of the fifth inning to take a 3-2 advantage and then held the Eagles in check the rest of the way to grab the game-one victory.

As a team, the Eagles left bases loaded three times in game one and twice in game two as they stranded a grand total of 25 runners on base in the two contests.

Senior hurler Amy Harrison (Graceville, Florida) was charged with the loss in game one as she gave up three runs off eight hits. Harrison (13-12) struck out five batters while walking two Miners.

USI returns to action Saturday when it hosts Kentucky Wesleyan College for Senior Day at the USI Softball Field. First pitch is slated for noon and the Eagles will honor their five seniors—Eickholt, Harrison, Morgan, Wood, and second baseman Niki Stewart (Evansville, Indiana)—following the doubleheader as part of their Senior Day festivities.

The Eagles were slated to make up their doubleheader with Saint Joseph's College Tuesday, but the contests were postponed due to class conflicts. No make-up date was announced.

Dan McDonnell,
USI Sports Information

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