San Antonio – Malissa Magee tossed a four-hitter and the St. Mary’s University offense pounded out 10 hits against 17th-ranked St. Edward’s as the Rattlers advanced to the Heartland Conference Softball Tournament Championship game with a 7-1 win at Rattler Field Friday afternoon.
Magee (Jr., Houston) allowed just one run on four hits and one walk, while striking out seven in the complete game win. She improved to 26-8 overall with the win and has won 10 of her last 11 starts. The only run of the game off Magee came in the third inning when Mandy Phillips led off with a single, moved to second on a wild pitch and came around to score on a single by Karen Varteressian. After that Magee allowed just two hits the rest of the way to pick up the win.
After dropping three of four games during the regular season, the Rattlers jumped out against the Hilltoppers early on Friday. In the first inning Mary K Pederson (Jr., Houston) led off with a single and Sade Moore (So., Angleton) reached on an error and Lindsay Barnes (Jr., San Antonio) brought home Pederson with a sacrifice fly to center.
The following inning the Rattlers broke the game open with three runs. With two outs Jenna Saucedo (So., San Antonio) singled to right-center and Sarah Cooper (Jr., Houston) doubled to left to put the Rattlers up 2-0. Pederson walked and Moore tripled to left-center to give the Rattlers a four-run edge. Lindsay Magaro (Sr., Elmendorf) brought home a run with a single in the fourth and the Rattlers picked up two unearned runs in the fifth to wrap up the scoring.
Pederson, Brittany Kettinger (Jr., Azle) and Saucedo had two hits in the game to lead the Rattlers, while seven of the Rattlers nine starters had at least one hit in the game.
Courtney Francis took the loss, allowing four runs on four hits and one walk in 1.2 innings of work.
In other action on Friday, Rebekah Tsatsa tossed a two-hit shutout to lead Montana State University-Billings to a 7-0 win over Lincoln University in loser’s bracket action. Stephanie Gosselin and Jenna Haacke had three hits each to lead the offense. Lincoln was eliminated from the tournament with the loss. In the second game of the day Incarnate Word scored two runs in the final three inning to rally past sixth seed Oklahoma Panhandle State University, 4-3. Three errors in the sixth inning allowed UIW to score the winning run, eliminating OPSU from the tournament.
St. Mary’s improved to 41-16 with the win, while St. Edward’s fell to 40-15. The Rattlers will await the winner of the consolation championship game, set for 11 a.m. Saturday morning. St. Mary’s will play the winner of that game at 1:30 p.m. If the Rattlers lose that game there will be a second championship game at 4 p.m. Saturday afternoon. All Rattler games will be broadcast over the internet at www.rattlerathletics.com, where the official tournament web site is also located.