Getting stellar performances from its offense and timely pitching outings Thursday, April 25, Morningside College locked up one of the two hosting duties for the 2019 Great Plains Athletic Conference Championships.
With a picture-perfect late April afternoon and early evening supplying sunshine for a home crowd encircled around Jensen Family Softball Complex, head coach Jessica Jones-Sitzmann‘s team stopped an upset-minded Hastings College crew 7-0 and 11-2 to move to 23-8 overall and 16-4 in the conference. The two triumphs, number 13 and 14 in the team’s last 16 chances, kept the Maroon only a game behind loop leader Midland University.
Game one was another Hallie Misiaszek (SR/Mitchell, SD) special, as the senior from Mitchell, S.D., garnered her 15th win in the circle by allowing only one hit and striking out two over six innings. Sophomore Alex Nelson (SO/Sioux Falls, SD) (Sioux Falls, S.D.) came out of the bullpen to slam the door on a combined two-hit shutout. Junior Mackenzie Lose (JR/Indianola, IA) (Indianola, Iowa), senior Rebecca Riley (SR/Gothenburg, NE) (Sioux City, Iowa) and junior Ashton Whited (JR/Elkhorn, NE) (Elkhorn, Neb.) tallied two hits apiece in support.
The nightcap was all Mustangs from the get-go. Sophomore Lexi Stolen (Sioux City, Iowa)crushed a two-run homer to left center field in the first and the floodgates opened in the second to the tune of six runs, as freshman Ellie Cropley (FR/Sioux City, IA) (Sioux City, Iowa) doubled in two and fellow first-year Morgan Nixon (FR/Omaha, NE) (Omaha, Neb.) drilled a two-run single to highlight the rally. The eight-run outburst over the first two frames was more than enough to allow Nelson to pick up her fourth pitching decision. Freshman Josie Baxter (FR/Lincoln, NE) (Sioux City, Iowa) added one more golden nugget, slamming a three-run home run to center to end the contest in five after Hastings had plated two in the top of the fifth.
Mside concludes its regular season slate Saturday, April 27. The University of Jamestown visits for Senior Day 2019 and a 1 p.m. start.