NDSU Advances in Summit League Championship With 5-2 Win Over UND
BROOKINGS, S.D. (NDSU Athletics) - North Dakota State softball picked up a win in the opening round of the Summit League Championship on Thursday, defeating No. 6 seed North Dakota 5-2 to advance to the double elimination portion of the bracket.
The No. 3 seeded Bison struck early with a run in the bottom of the first. After Molly Gates and Emilee Buinga reached on a walk and hit by pitch to begin the inning, Cameryn Maykut hit an RBI groundout to the right side to score Gates for the opening run of the game.
UND would threaten in the second and third innings, loading the bases both times. In the second, UND started with three walks to begin the inning, but Lainey Lyle picked up two strikeouts and a pop out to get out of the jam. In the third, UND picked up their first hits of the game to load the bases but Lyle and the Bison defense got out of the jam again.
NDSU responded in the bottom of the third with a single from Skylar Padgett and then Gates reached on an error. Buringa then hit a three-run home run to left field to put the Bison up 4-0.
North Dakota would answer in the fourth with a run and threatened for more, getting runners to second and third. Paige Vargas came in to pitch for the Bison and recorded a strikeout and pop up to get out of the jam.
The Bison would load the bases in the bottom half to begin the inning and Buringa drew a four pitch walk for the fifth run of the game. After Buringa’s fourth RBI of the game, the Bison grounded into a fielder’s choice, lined out and struck out to strand the bases loaded.
It wouldn’t haunt the Bison as Vargas would hold UND scoreless in the fifth and sixth innings, but back-to-back doubles in the seventh to start the inning saw the Fighting Hawks get one run back. However, the Bison would record three-straight outs to seal the victory.
Vargas picked up the win and improved to 15-9 on the season, tossing 3.2 innings in relief with one run allowed on two hits. Vargas had three strikeouts.
Lyle tossed the first 3.1 innings and allowed one run on five hits and four walks with four strikeouts in a no decision.
The Bison advance to take on No. 2 seed Omaha on Friday. The game time against Omaha has not been announced, due to the postponement of Thursday night’s game in the tournament. A start time will be released by The Summit League at a later time.
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