Tigers Drop A Pair of Heartbreakers, Eliminated From Playoff Contention
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee State dropped a pair of heartbreakers at Ohio Valley Conference opponent, Morehead State on Saturday afternoon. The Eagles snuck away with a 1-0 eight inning win, before grabbing game two, 4-2. The two losses eliminated TSU (16-36, 4-18) from contention for the final spot to the OVC Championships. MSU (12-31-1, 8-13) jumped into the final spot with four games remaining.
The first game saw the Tigers reach base in all eight innings, but no runner would ever reach third base. TSU finished the game with eight runners left on base as they collected eight hits and Tayler Shimizu reaching after being hit by a pitch.
Ashley Haynes and Kate Morris led the Tigers with two hits each. Kiarra Freeman, Lindsey Burgess, Rebekka Gross and Jayna Hanawahine all notched a hit during the eight inning affair.
Tanna Seuferer would scatter the hits, only allowing two in the same inning once, the eighth. The Tigers would pair the hits together after two outs and were not able to pick up the all-important hit.
Olivia Gamache worked the first three innings allowing one hit, to the first batter she faced. Gamache retired the next nine and made way for Shea Morris, who continued the streak, as she sat down the first five batters. MSU picked up a two-out single against Morris, but left the runner stranded at first.
MSU was held in check until the eighth inning where a TSU miscue got the ball rolling for the home squad. First baseman Dana Hutchins gave the Eagles a base runner with one out, reaching on a misplayed grounder to third. Two batters later, Hutchins moved to second on a walk, giving MSU their first true scoring opportunity since the first inning. Stephanie Etter took advantage of the situation with a ball into right center on a 0-2 count to plate Hutchins for the 1-0, extra inning win.
Shea Morris (9-13) took the loss after giving up two hits, a walk and an unearned run in 4.2 innings of work.
Game two started with Freeman dropping a bunt single and moving to second on the second of her three stolen bases of the day. Haynes followed with a walk against Kelcey McMurray to give TSU two runners on and no outs. McMurray and the Eagles would retire the next three Tigers, ending yet another threat.
Gamache started the game for TSU and surrendered two hits and a walk, but kept MSU off the board for the first two innings.
The Eagles would strike first as they used four hits and a walk to score three times off Hannah St. Clair. TSU would answer as Gross and Kate Morris earned walks and advanced a base on a ground out by Shimizu. Shea Morris put the Tigers on the board with a single to center, plating Gross from third. A walk to Liz Stansberry loaded the bases for TSU and a walk to Freeman pushed Kate Morris across the plate to cut the lead to 3-2.
Seuferer replaced McMurray and got Haynes to ground out on a 3-2 count to stop the Tigers rally. Seuferer would continue to shut the Tigers down by recording three consecutive three-up, three-down innings.
MSU tacked on another run for good measure in the fourth, giving Seuferer (8-13) the win, her second of the day.
The final game of the series will begin at 1:00pm ET on Sunday after MSU honors their seniors. The game can be heard on tsutigers.com.