The St. Catharine College softball team had one more chance to qualify for the Mid-South Conference tournament that begins this weekend in Kingsport, Tenn. And in each game of Monday’s doubleheader it looked like Holly Smith’s team could get it done. But the visiting Campbellsville Tigers took control of each game late to bring a disappointing end to the Patriots’ season.
As a result of the sweep, by scores of 10-5 and 9-1, the Patriots finished ninth in the regular season standings, one game behind eighth place Pikeville who was the last team to make the eight team tournament field. What made the outcome more frustrating for Smith was that her team had the same number of wins as Pikeville but because her Patriots played two more games than the Bears, Pikeville earned a berth by percentage points.
“Yes, that is frustrating,” said Smith. “Just because we made up all the games that were rained out we are basically penalized and don’t make it to the tournament. But then again, we had our chances. If we win one of the close game we lost it is not an issue.”
St. Catharine (22-30, 9-21) took a 3-0 lead in the first inning of Monday’s opener but saw the Tigers (36-13, 24-5) cut the led to 3-2 in the third inning and then take the lead for good with a five-run sixth inning en route to the 10-5 win.
Taylor Steff homered twice and knocked in four runs four runs for the Patriots. Hagan Goldey also homered and Brandi hood had two hits.
The 9-1 score in game two may look like a rout but it also was close until late. Leading just 1-0 entering the fifth inning, the Tigers plated five runs, all with two outs, to pull away . Kristin Benton hit an 0-2 pitch for a three-run homer and two batters later heather Oakley drilled a two-run shot to make the score 6-1.
Campbellsville added three more runs in the sixth inning to end the game due to the run rule.
St. Catharine mustered just four hits in the game, Goldey accounting for two of those in the final game of her career. Chelcie Rein and Ashley Hardin were the other two seniors who finished their patriot careers on Monday.