Softball sits at 15-13 after loss to UMSL

| Michael Bauer sports editor |

The Pittsburg State softball team managed to get one game out of the way on Wednesday, March 26, in a double header against Missouri-St. Louis.
Unfortunately, the Gorillas were delivered a loss, 9-1, in game one and were down by six runs in the third inning before the rest of game two was called due to inclement weather at the Pitt State Softball Complex.
The Tritons of Missouri-St. Louis improved their record to 19-2 overall with the only losses coming to NCAA Division I Southeast Missouri and Division II No. 1-ranked Central Oklahoma.
The Gorillas had as many as six errors in game one and were down by three runs at the bottom of the first inning in game two.
With the loss, Pitt State now sits at 15-13 overall. The Gorillas were fresh off a weekend tournament at the Missouri Western Invitational from Friday, March 21, to Sunday, March 23.
Pitt State ended the weekend with a 2-4 record in St. Joseph, Mo. They started off strong with a win against the No. 12-ranked Emporia State Hornets, 3-2.
The Gorillas recorded five hits and the Hornets made two errors while Pitt State had only one. Junior Cheslyn Mitchell was the leader, going 2-for-3 at the plate, scoring a run.
Sophomore Kylie Harpst was on the mound the entire game.
Senior Breanna George reached an error by the Hornets in the first inning. She was moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and eventually, senior Tiffany Brown’s walk was followed by junior McKenzie Rynard, bringing George home with an RBI base hit to put the Gorillas in front 1-0.
Emporia State responded with two runs on a two-run home run by Kailtlin Caston in the top of the second inning.
At the bottom of the fourth, Pitt State capitalized off another ESU error. Mitchell started the inning with a base hit that led to her scoring the tying run. George scored off an RBI base hit enroute to the victory.
In the Gorillas’ second game, Concordia-St. Paul scored three runs and didn’t look back in a win, 3-2. The Gorillas could muster only two runs on only four hits and one Golden Bear error.
On the second day of the tournament, the Gorillas lost to Minnesota State-Mankato, 16-6, before beating Northern State in five innings, 11-2.
The Minnesota State-Mankato Mavericks scored 16 runs on as many hits and three errors while the Gorillas scored six runs on 10 hits and two errors.
Harpst was the starting pitcher for the game before senior Haleigh Sills pitched the last five innings.
The Gorillas trailed 7-0 before getting something going with two runs in the bottom of the third including a Rynard two-run home run.
But the Mavericks stayed in front and went up in the fourth, 9-2. While PSU kept the game close with four consecutive runs, starting in the bottom of the fourth and by the bottom of the sixth, had pulled to within three, the Mavericks scored seven unanswered runs.
Game two ended better for the Gorillas after Pitt State scored a three-run home run by Tiffany Brown and added four runs in the second.
Pitt State was up 8-0 before Northern State scored its only two runs in the third; the Gorillas were not to be denied.
On Sunday, March 23, the Gorillas fell to Augustana College, 11-7, and to St. Cloud State, 5-3, to end the weekend.
The Gorillas scored seven runs on 11 hits and two errors, while Augustana scored 11 runs on 13 hits and one Pitt State error.
Against St. Cloud State, the Gorillas managed a lead, 3-2, in the top of the fourth. Then, an error and four base hits and three runs allowed St. Cloud State to take a lead, 5-2, in the fourth.

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