The Augustana College softball team picked the right time to put it all together this spring.|
And as a result, Coach Kris Kistler's Vikings have their first CCIW Tournament title since 2007 and first trip to the NCAA Div. III National Tournament since 2010.
The third-seeded Vikings capped a 3-0 weekend on Saturday, defeating top-seeded Carthage 4-0 at Carthage Field in Kenosha, Wis., to seal the CCIW Tournament title and the national tourney trip. Augie will learn its tournament fate on Monday morning when brackets are announced.
"We just played really well," said Kistler after her team moved to 29-12. "We just put it all together. We had good timely hits, we played really good defense, and our pitching was outstanding."
That pretty much summed up the day. All four Augie runs were scored in three innings with two outs. The defense turned three double plays. And pitchers Sarah Hintz and Ashley Anderson combined for the six-hit shutout.
Offensively, Cheyenne Burnett was 3-for-3 with two runs scored and an RBI from the No. 6 spot in the batting order. No. 9 hitter Jenna Teson was 2-for-3 with two RBIs.
That combination gave the Vikings a 1-0 lead in the second when Burnett singled to lead off the frame and Teson singled her home with two outs after Christina Pagan was hit by a pitch. An inning later, Burnett came through with an RBI single after Jaime Rehmert doubled with two outs.
In the sixth, Augie put away the game when Teson delivered an RBI infield single and the Vikings later scored on an error.
"We definitely are a team that has come up with huge hits," said Kistler, whose club has been banking on the home run ball of late but did not take any over the fence in the last two days.
Hintz (13-6) gave up singles to the first two batters she faced in the seventh before giving way to Anderson, just a freshman. The former Sherrard prep then enticed a liner that turned into the third Viking double play and eventually worked out of the frame for her third save.
Augustana 4, Carthage 0
Carthage 000 000 0—0 6 1
Augustana 011 002 x—4 8 0
WP: Sarah Hintz (13-6). LP: Tina Campbell (9-6). Save: Ashley Anderson (3).
Two ore more hits – CC: Corinne Sheley 2, Abby Hanson 2; Augie: Cheyenne Burnett 3, Jenna Teson 2. 2B – Augie: Jaime Rehmert. Two or more RBIs – Augie: Teson 2.
Records: Augie 29-12, Carthage 30-10. Next Augie game: Thursday in NCAA Div. III Tournament, location and opponent TBA.