Bemidji State drops first game of NSIC Tournament
Friday, May 5, 2006
CROOKSTON, Minn. (Lauf Field) -- The No. 6 Bemidji State University softball team scored six consecutive runs to come within four of the No. 3 seed Concordia-University St. Paul but it would not be enough as the Golden Bears pounded five homeruns to take the opening game of the 2006 NSIC Tournament 17-6 after six innings today at Lauf Field in Crookston, Minn. The Beavers now move on to play No.7 Northern State University at 2:00 p.m. in the double elimination event.

The Golden Bears put the Beavers in an early hole sending eight players to the plate in the bottom of the first inning, scoring three on a Kristen Linell homerun to centerfield—it would be her first of three round-trippers on the day.

CSP brought more of the same in the second inning batting around and plating three runs to force BSU into a pitching change. Amy Potter, replaced Lindsey Imhof after 1 1/3 holding CSP scoreless forcing two quick fly-outs, but not before Kristen Schmidt plated two on a single to right-center followed by a pair of singles to score the final run of the inning and give the Golden Bears a 6-0 advantage.

The Golden Bears used a pair of homers and another that bounced off the Bemidji State leftfielder’s glove and over the fence to build a 10-0 lead and look to be headed to a win by the eight-run-rule, but the Beavers bats would come alive in the fourth inning.

In the top of the inning CSP made a pitching change as Mandy Turba replaced Schmidt. Timely BSU hits and costly walks amounted to three runs in the inning.

Jessica Pullar broke up the shutout scoring from second on a throwing error by the shortstop on a fielder’s choice by Tara Hiscock. Becky Cerkvenik plated the second run of the inning on a pinch-hit single to left field. Katie Prettyman drove in the third run of the inning to close the gap to 10-3.

After sitting the Golden Bears down in order in the bottom of the fourth, BSU would add three in the fifth batting around for the second consecutive inning knocking Turba out of the game and forcing the Golden Bears to reinsert the designated player Schmidt. Pullar scored when Turba loaded the bases and walked Michelle Taylor. Hiscock drove in Cerkvenik and Taylor with a bases-clearing double to centerfield.

The Golden Bears bounced back in the bottom of the fifth scoring three runs on a pair of doubles.

After setting the Beavers down in order in their half of the sixth, CSP loaded the bases for Linell who put a walk-off line-drive homerun over the right field fence give the Golden Bears a 17-6 win.

Lindsey Imhof was the pitcher of decision for BSU allowing six earned runs in 1 2/3 of work to drop to 5-7 on the year.

Hiscock paced the Beavers at the plate collecting two hits in three at bats and reaching a third time after being hit by a pitch. She had two RBI on the day. Pullar also added a pair of hits in the loss.

Linell who was 4-for-5 at the plate with a trio of homeruns including the walk-off grand slam to end the game powered CSP. She totaled a CSP single-game record eight RBI in the game and score four times.

Bemidji State falls to 16-21 on the season and will play Northern State at 2:00 on Lauf Field for the right to extend its season. CSP improves to 36-15 and will battle the No. 2 seed Winona State in the second round.