Marlins Heading to Championship Series with 5-3 Win!
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – The Virginia Wesleyan softball team advanced to the NCAA Division III Softball Championship Series with a 5-3 victory on Sunday over Texas-Tyler, ending the season for the defending national champions.
Texas-Tyler set down two Marlins early in the second inning, but could not get out of the frame without the Marlins putting up five runs.
Kaylah Duplain singled through the left side, moving Teresa Cardamone to second who had walked earlier in the frame. Liz Bailey loaded the bases with a single up the middle, setting the stage for the first run of the game. Beth Ford drew a five pitch walk to make it 1-0. Kiersten Richardson reached on a fielding error by the centerfielder as two more Marlins crossed the plate on a costly miscue.
Madison Glaubke continued her hot streak, singling through the left side to plate Ford and Richardson for the 5-0 edge.
Texas-Tyler did its best to preserve its title defense, posting three runs in the fifth. Hannah Moore started the inning with a single before moving to second in front of a Bianca Van Vlerah walk. Kaylee Prather singled up the middle to score Moore and Van Vlerah to cut it to 5-2. Cheyenne Thompson grounded a ball hard back to Courtney Wright, but Prather was still fast enough to race home to make it 5-3.
KK Stevens led off the sixth inning with a single, moving to third on a double to the wall off the bat of Whitney Romero, bringing the go-ahead run to the plate.
The Marlins turned to ace Hanna Hull out of the bullpen with hopes of preserving the two-run lead. She forced Mel Hinojosa to fly out softly to right field, keeping Stevens at third base. Hull then struck out Moore on three pitches before getting Van Vlerah to pop out to shortstop to end the threat.
Wright went five innings, allowing two earned runs on five hits. Hull struck out three in two shutout innings of relief.
Virginia Wesleyan (52-3) will face St. John Fisher (44-6) on Monday at 2 p.m. in a best two-of-three series for the national championship.