St. Norbert Stays Alive at MWC Tournament

From Sports Information Director, May 4, 2013 | Softball
by Dan Lukes, dan.lukes@snc.edu, (920) 403-4077

APPLETON - St. Norbert College stayed in contention at the Midwest Conference Softball Championship by winning its first losers' bracket game in the tournament held at Lawrence University's Whiting Field.

The Green Knights (20-14) dropped their first-round game 9-3 to Cornell College before rebounding to eliminate Lake Forest College 8-5. St. Norbert will face Lawrence in an elimination game at 10 a.m. Sunday in Appleton, as the tournament returns to Lawrence due to unplayable conditions at Mel Nicks Field in De Pere. The St. Norbert-Lawrence winner will have to beat Cornell twice to earn the MWC championship.

St. Norbert was locked in a tight battle with Cornell, with a 3-3 game progressing into the seventh inning. The Rams scored six times in the top of the seventh after two outs to pull away. Morgan Buboltz had an RBI double in the first inning, but Cornell's Renata Rankin hit a three-run home run in the second for a 3-1 lead.

The Green Knights got a solo home run from Steph Brunette in the fourth inning, and Jessica DeMeuse's RBI single to score Samantha Gross in the sixth inning knotted the score at 3-3.

Gross finished the game 2-for-4 with two runs scored, as the Green Knights finished with eight hits. Morgan Rusch took the loss, allowing 10 hits and eight runs in 6 2/3 innings.

St. Norbert never trailed against Lake Forest, but the game had its tense moments. Buboltz stroked a two-run double in the first inning, but the Foresters scored twice in the third inning. St. Norbert scored three times in the fifth inning, but Lake Forest answered again with three in the top of the sixth.

The Green Knights scored three runs on four hits in the bottom of the sixth inning, with Brunette's RBI double giving St. Norbert a 6-5 lead. DeMeuse's two-run single to left gave St. Norbert a pair of insurance runs.

St. Norbert had 11 hits, with Brunette going 3-for-4 and Gross and Alex Kohnle each posting two hits. Rusch earned the win, working 1 2/3 innings of scoreless relief.