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Courtesy: UTSA Athletics

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi ends UTSA's tournament run in extra innings, 6-5

Courtesy: UTSA Athletics Communications
Release: 05/13/2011
Courtesy UTSA Athletics Communications
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HUNTSVILLE — Senior Kristin Kappler went 1-for-2 with a three-run homer and fellow senior Danye Holmes had a pair of RBIs, but it wasn’t enough to take down No. 1 seed and regular season champion Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Friday night, as the Islanders won 6-5 in eight inningsat the Southland Conference Tournament.

A&M-Corpus Christi, which defeated the Roadrunners for the fourth time in as many meetings this spring, improved to 40-18. Meanwhile, UTSA's season came to an end at 28-27, which is a five-game improvement from a year ago.

After its 11-inning win earlier in the day, the Birds allowed a run in the bottom of the first after an infield single by Hannah Schwarz, stolen base, wild pitch and sacrifice fly to right.

That score stood until an eventful fourth inning that saw both teams put a dent in the scoreboard.

The Roadrunners half of the frame began with junior Ashley Kappler’s single up the middle, her second hit of the evening. Freshman Molly Fichtner walked before Kristin Kappler gave UTSA a 3-1 lead with a blast to right field for her seventh homer of the season.

That ended Islanders starter Vianca Pesina’s night and reliever Greta Cecchetti promptly gave up a single to junior Caitlyn Ivy before striking out three consecutive batters to end the panel.

However, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi got run-scoring hits from Jamise Jackson, Stephanie Vead and Caley Jeter to go along with a sacrifice fly from pinch hitter Laura Phillips to grab a 5-3 lead. After getting the first out, UTSA starter Emily Humpal allowed four consecutive hits, but she closed out the inning.

UTSA made a charge in the sixth and tied the game on Holmes’ pinch-hit two-run double to left center, which plated pinch-runner Samantha Beeson and Ivy to tie the game.

The Islanders nearly won in the bottom of the seventh.

With one out and the bases loaded, Sandy Schumann blooped what looked to be the game-winning single over the head of a drawn-in infield. However, center fielder Laura Little charged the ball and threw a strike home to get the force out. Reliever Halyee Staton then got a grounder to end the threat.

Hoever, A&M-Corpus Christi broke through in the eighth by putting runners on second and third with one out. Staton’s pitch to Brittany Tucker was out of Fichtner’s reach and the wild pitch allowed the winning run to score.

Staton (6-8) took the loss, while Jordan Trujillo (16-7) grabbed her second win of the day with four strikeouts in two innings of one-hit relief.

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