IOWA CITY, Iowa — The Creighton Softball team split a pair of extra inning games to close out play at the Hawkeye Invitational in Iowa City, Iowa, on Sunday. The Bluejays defeated host Iowa 4-2 in eight innings before falling to South Dakota, 5-3, also in eight innings.
Both contests were tied 2-2 heading to extra innings.
With the split, Creighton moves to 8-16 on the season heading into Wednesday’s home opener vs. Drake. First pitch at the CU Sports Complex is set for 4 p.m.
Creighton 4, Iowa 2 (8 innings)
Creighton started the final day of the Hawkeye Invitational with a 4-2 win over host Iowa, behind a 3-for-4 performance from freshman Sam Dellinger.
Dellinger singled home Creighton’s first run of the day with a base hit to plate Tash Coffiel.
The Hawkeyes tied the game in the fifth inning. as Claire Fritsch scored on a sacrifice bunt from Kaitlyn Mullarkey.
Iowa (4-17) was down to its final out before putting together a rally to force extra frames. With two outs, Lea Thompson walked and moved to second on a wild pitch. She came around to score on a single from Mullarkey.
The teams went to the international tiebreaker rule to open the eighth inning, with CU’s Ashley Cantu being placed on second base. Dellinger drove her home to make it 3-2, and would later score on an error by the Hawkeyes to account for the game’s final run.
Bryana Clark would then retire all three batters she faced in the eighth inning, stranding Allie Wood on third base.
Clark went the distance, improving to 4-5 with the victory. She allowed five hits and four walks while striking out six. Elizabeth Wiegand (0-4) earned the loss for Iowa, allowing both runs in the eighth inning in relief of starter Allison Doocy.
South Dakota 5, Creighton 3 (8 innings)
Playing just 25 minutes after the Iowa win, Creighton got off to a quick start when Cantu led off the bottom of the first inning with a home run to stake the Bluejays to an early 1-0 lead. Cantu’s blast was her first as a Bluejay, and made her the first Creighton player to start a game with a home run since Ellen Homan exactly three years earlier on March 19, 2014.
Cantu also factored prominently in the second run of the game, as she singled with one out in the third inning, moved to second on a sac bunt by Coffiel and scored on Dellinger’s single.
South Dakota halved the deficit in the fourth inning when Holscher singled and later came around to score on Dellinger’s wild pitch.
The Bluejays turned to Clark in the circle for the fifth inning, and the Coyotes tied the game. Camille Fowler walked, moved to second on a bunt and scored on Shelby Keil’s single.
South Dakota had a first crack at scoring in the eighth inning, which was used with international tiebreaker rules. With one out and runners on first and second, Erica Limon homered to right to give the Coyotes a 5-2 lead. It was the first home run of the freshman’s collegiate career.
Creighton tried a rally of its own in the home half of the eighth as Allie Reinhart singled home Coffiel to cut CU’s deficit to 5-3. Anna O’Gorman followed Reinhart with a single to bring the winning run to the plate, but Mikaela Pechar went down on strikes to end the threat.
Ally Wiegand (5-4) threw the final two innings and earned her second victory in as many days over the Bluejays, while Clark dropped to 4-6 with the defeat.
Cantu went 2-for-4 and scored twice for Creighton, while O’Gorman had three hits in four at bats for the Bluejays.