(Neb)-Eagles Take 2 Tough Losses At Home Sunday
CHADRON, Neb. -- Chadron State College fought hard Sunday, but dropped a pair of close Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference softball games to Dixie State 3-2 and 8-6.
The Trailblazers improve to 29-10 overall and 23-9 in the RMAC while the Eagles fall to 11-30 and 8-23 RMAC. They remain at the bottom of the league standings, but are still very much in contention for the final two conference tournament bids, which will almost definitely go to teams under .500 in conference play.
Dixie State University pitcher Cambrie Hazel rebounded from a sub-par showing in the series opener on Saturday to throw a complete game 3-hitter in Sunday's first game and earn a save in the second. Chadron State stranded runners in 5 of the 7 innings of both games, leaving 4 in scoring position.
The first 3 Dixie State hitters got on board without in the first game, but
Peyton Propp gave up only one unearned run on an RBI single by Riley Tyteca.
CSC's Bailey Marvel singled in the bottom of the first, but Hazel retired the next 9 batters in order before Haleigh Hoefs tied the game with a solo homer in the fourth.
More mistakes by CSC led to the winning run for Dixie in the top of the 5th, as the Trailblazers scored another unearned run on an error, single passed ball, and sacrifice fly.
A couple of Eagles walked in the final three innings, with Kayla Michel and Alyssa Geist each laying down sac bunts to move runners, but all three innings ended on strikeouts with the final score 2-1.
Propp went the distance for the Eagles, scattering 7 hits but striking out only 1 while also walking 7 and hitting a batter. The Eagles turned a pair of double plays, one by Hoefs at 2nd base and the other by center fielder Ellie Owens.
In the afternoon game, Dixie State opened up a 6-0 lead with a trio of 2-run homers, 2 in the 1st and one in the 4th. They threatened to reach the mercy rule in the 5th, but scored only once when a runner at 3rd reached home on a double-steal before the tail runner was thrown out a 2nd.
The Eagles answered strongly in their half of the inning with 6 runs. Bailey Rominger had a bases-loaded, 3-RBI double to start the scoring, then came home on a single by Hoefs. Owens brought in Hoefs with a single and pinch runner Katelyn Eldredge found home plate on a DSU throwing error.
Annother pair of errors scored an unearned run for Dixie in the top of the 6th and the Trailblazers brought back Hazel with 2 on and 1 out in the bottom of the inning to get for the final 5 outs.
Michel walked to load the bases but Hazel struck out Owens looking to end the threat, then struckout the side in the 7th. She finished the day with 11 strikeouts while giving up just 1 run in 8-2/3 inning to improve to 12-5 plus a save in preserving the win in the second game for Carissa Burgess, now 16-4 on the year.
Popp, who had thrown only 24 innings coming into the weekend, got the decision in all 4 games on the weekend - winning the opener in relief, and the last 3 as the starter, although she lasted just a third of an inning in the finale and slipped to 2-5 on the season.
Dallas Magnusson gave up 4 runs in 6-2/3 inning in Sunday's second game.
The Eagles have a 3-team pod series in Pueblo, Colo, this Friday and Saturday - a day earlier than usual because of Easter. The Eagles, host CSU-Pueblo and Fort Lewis will each play the other once on both days.
They hold 3 of the last 4 spots in the RMAC and each probably needs a sweep to have a shot at the league tournament.
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