After defeating #6 NHTI, the #8 Mountaineers returned to field for a second game this evening. This matchup being against former KIAC foe the #2 Carlow University Lady Celtics with a trip to the championship game on the line.
The scoring started for both team in the first inning as the Lady Celtics scored the first run of the game and took a 1-0 lead going into the bottom of the first inning. Hannah Carter and Kari Kviten set up a scene we have witnessed before this season when they both reached base with a single and a fielder's choice, respectively. The scene was set and Morgan McClure delievered as she stepped to the batter's box and blasted her sixth home run of the season, this one bringing three runs across the plate to give Berea a 3-1 lead.
Defense and pitching from both teams kept the bats at bay as the teams combined for just three hits from the second inning to the top of the sixth inning. In the bottom of the sixth inning, Berea put two more runs on the board as Carter, who reached base via an error and Kviten singled, crossed home plate off a McClure ground out and an error by the Carlow shortstop error caused by a Katelyn Blair hit to give the Mountaineers a 5-1 lead heading to the seventh inning, three outs away from advancing to the national championship game. After the first batter walked, Berea would record outs on the next two batters. With one out left to end the game, Carlow tried to comeback by hitting a two run home run which made the score 5-3, but fell short as the Blue Crew recorded the third out needed to end the inning and earned a trip to the championship game.
Morgan McClure led the offensive efforts for the Mountaineers today going 1-3 with one home run and four RBIs. The team used four hits to score five runs. Blair went the distance for Berea, giving up five hits, three earned runs and walking four batters.
Berea College advances to the USCAA National Championship game with the win and will face the #1 Pomeroys of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College. The Pomeroys have not recorded a loss in the tournament so far so the Mountaineers will have to win two games against SMWC to bring the trophy home. First pitch is scheduled for 12:00 PM tomorrow.