Cowgirls advance to SLC title game after extra-innings walk-off over Southeastern, 7-6
HAMMOND— For the second straight day McNeese softball picked up an extra-inning win and for the second straight day, Freshman Crislyne Moreno picks up the game-winning hit to advance the Cowgirls to Friday’s Southland Conference Tournament Championship game scheduled at 12 p.m. Friday.
McNeese (37-19) fell behind 6-0 with no outs in the first inning as Cowgirl starter Ashley Vallejo struggled in the circle, allowing five runs on three hits before giving the ball to reliever Whitney Tate. Tate (12-9) gave up one run in the first inning then shut down the Lions’ offense the rest of the game without allowing another run to cross the plate. Tate ended the game, allowing six more hits, one walk and three strikeouts to pick up the win.
While Tate was dealing in the circle, the Cowgirls slowly made their comeback inning by inning. McNeese got on the board in the bottom of the first off an RBI double by Moreno.
The Cowgirls cut the deficit in half (6-3) with a run in the third and two more in the fourth. Chloe Gomez’s single through the left side scored Jil Poullard in the third. Josie Willingham’s first pitch solo home run, her first of the season and an RBI sac fly by Poullard accounted for the second and third Cowgirl runs of the game.
After two scoreless innings, the Cowgirls struck again with two more runs in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game at six apiece, sending it into extra innings.
Moreno led the inning off with a single followed by a Gomez one-out single through the left side. Senior pinch hitter Adriana Ramirez came through with the biggest hit of her career with a one-out single through the left side, scoring both Moreno and pinch-runner Erin Ardoin to tie the game.
Tate retired Southeastern (39-15) in order in the top of the eighth, setting up the game-winner.
Kendall Talley got things going with a double to right field. Poullard was then intentionally walked putting runners on first and second. Moreno singled through the left side bringing Talley all the way home with a play at the plate but Talley ran into the catcher’s glove and the ball fell out, allowing the run to score and ending the game.
1st: Southeastern scores six runs on five hits (SE 6, McN 0)
McNeese gets on the board with an RBI double by Crislyne Moreno (SE 6, McN 1)
3rd: A RBI single through the left side by Chloe Gomez scores Poullard (SE 6, McN 2)
4th: Cowgirls score two runs of a Josie Willingham with a first-pitch solo home run and an RBI sac fly by Poullard (SE 6, McN 4)
B7: A one-out pinch-hit two-RBI single through the left side by Adriana Ramirez tied the game (McN 6, SE 6)
B8: A RBI single by Moreno allowed Talley to score from second for the game-winning run (McN 7, SE 6)
•-For the second straight game, McNeese won in extra innings.
•- For the second straight game, Freshman Crislyne Moreno picks up the game-winning hit
•- Southeastern batted around in the first inning, scored 6 runs, on 5 hits, with one walk, one hit batter
•-Tate replaced starter Ashely Vallejo in the first inning with the bases loaded, no outs and the Cowgirls down 5-0
•- Tate threw seven shutout innings in relief and allowed only six hits with three strikeouts and improved to 12-9 on the year
•- McNeese outhit Southeastern 13-10
•- Moreno and Talley both led the Cowgirls with three hits apiece
•- Talley also led the team with three runs scored
•- Gomez and Reese Reyna were credited with two hits apiece
•- McNeese handed Southeastern its third home loss of the season and snapped its home game winning streak
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