Story Courtesy of BSU Media Relations
AKRON, Ohio - The No. 4 seed Ball State University softball team (34-22) defeated the No. 5 seed Eastern Michigan (26-15) Wednesday afternoon at Firestone Stadium, 2-1, in its first game of the 2011 Mid-American Conference Tournament.
"Obviously a great game," said Ball State head softball coach Craig Nicholson. " I thought Eastern Michigan played really well today. We had some chances to score earlier in the game and we finally found a way to break through in the eighth inning."
In the eighth inning freshman Jennifer Gilbert hit a solo shot to left center to win the ball game for the Cardinals. Gilbert was 3-for-4 from the plate with two RBI while teammate junior Amanda Montalto went a perfect 4-for-4. The homerun was Gilbert's 15th of the season.
Sophomore Audra Sanders earned the win in the circle for Ball State in the pitchers duel. After 8.0 innings of work, Sanders gave up one run off of four hits while striking out nine batters. With the victory Sanders improves to 18-14 on the season. Eastern Michigan's Lauren Wells suffered the loss for the Eagles and falls to 9-5 overall.
The Eagles scored one run off of two hits in the start of the first inning taking the early 1-0 edge over Ball State. With two outs in the bottom of the first Montalto singled up the middle she then advanced to second after Taylor Rager was patient at the plate to earn a walk. Gilbert then brought home Montalto after a single to left field which evened the score at 1-1.
The No. 4 seed Ball State University softball team will play its second game of the MAC Tournament Thursday at 1:30 p.m. against the winner of the No. 1 Western Michigan versus No. 8 Kent State game.