Softball Season Concludes with 2-1 Setback to Drake in MVC Tournament
May 10, 2012
The Missouri State softball team (25-26, 12-14) saw its season come to an end with a 2-1 loss to Drake (29-27, 17-10) in the quarterfinals of the State Farm MVC Tournament in Carbondale, Ill., on Thursday evening.
"We came to compete and competed hard today," said head coach Holly Hesse. "We are going to miss our seniors. Nat(alie Rose) has been our leader on the field and Raeven leads by example on and off the field. They are two special players and I am happy that they have been a Bear for foru years."
Natalie Rose tossed her 24th complete game of the season. She scattered four hits, but two were solo home runs. She struck out six Bulldogs, running her career total to 664. Rose had 155 career appearances, the most by a Bear in softball history.
Ashley Brentz drew her team-leading 29th walk of the season with one out in the top of the first. Two batters later, Heather Duckworth singled through the right side. Brentz went all the way to third on the play, drawing a throw allowing Duckworth to get to second base. But MSU was unable to capitalize on the opportunity.
Drake's Torey Craddock hit a solo home run to put the Bulldogs ahead in the bottom of the first. But Missouri State would answer in the second. With two outs, Chelsea Jones sent a towering shot over the left field wall to knot the game at 1-1. Raeven Replogle laced the next pitch to left for a single, but was stranded to end the inning.
DU got another solo home run in the second. Bulldog pitcher Jordan Gronewold hit a ball that cleared the right-centerfield fence to push Drake back in front.
Rose got into and back out of trouble in the third. Drake worked the bases loaded with just one out, but a great fielding play by Brentz to cut down the runner at the plate. Rose then recorded her third strikeout of the inning to get away unscathed in the frame.
The Bears got a two-out rally going in the fifth. Brentz reached on a Drake fielding error. She moved to second when Stevie Pierce looped a single to right-center. Duckworth drew a four-pitch walk and the Bears had the bases loaded. But Drake got out of the inning without MSU scoring.
Missouri State registered its second-consecutive 25-win season and recorded its 68th MVC Tournament win with the first round victory over Bradley.