For Immediate Release
May 11, 2018
Cameron University Athletics
Kenton Means – Sports Information Director
SAN ANGELO, Texas – The Cameron softball team faced two elimination games at the NCAA DII South Central Regional 2 on Friday and won both, beating Colorado Christian 4-3 and No. 10 West Texas A&M 4-3; CU faces No. 6 Angelo State for the Regional Championship on Saturday.
Against the Cougars, the Aggies got off to a fast start as Brenna Busby led off the game with a solo home run, her 14th on the season. They then added another run in the bottom of the second as Bethany Hines drove in Carly Johnson on a RBI single to left field; Johnson walked to lead off the inning and then stole second to get into scoring position.
Colorado Christian answered CU in the top of the third, scoring a run on a double with no outs. Hines limited the damage in that inning by striking out the next two batters and then getting a groundout to end the inning.
However, CCU led off their half of the fourth with back-to-back singles, and then after a sacrifice bunt to move the runners to second and third, another single drove in both runners two give the Cougars a 3-2 lead. Once again, Hines got out of the threat of a big inning with a pair of punchouts.
Cameron was able to come right back in the bottom of the fifth though, as B. Busby walked to lead off the inning, stole second, and then scored on a ground-rule double by Raley Long. The Black and Gold took back the lead in the sixth, scoring a single run on a two out, pinch hit single by Tori Smith that scored Aliyah Young from second base.
In the seventh, the Aggies found that the Cougars would not be eliminated so easily. Hines gave up a leadoff double but then struck out the next batter and got the following hitter to lineout. After a walk to put CCU runners on first and second, Rylee Willmon then came to pitch and closed the door, getting a lineout to earn the save and secure the CU win.
Hines put together a strong performance in the circle for CU, going 6.2 innings while giving up three runs on six hits with seven strikeouts and only one walk.
Cameron totaled five hits from five different players and four RBI by four different players. B. Busby provided two runs scored, while Johnson and Young scored the other two.
In the second elimination game, game faced No. 10 West Texas A&M, who they lost to 4-0 in the opening game of the Regional on Thursday. Much like that first game against WT, CU gave up two runs early, as the Lady Buffs scored a pair in the bottom of the second, but held the strong offense at bay for the other first four innings.
This time around, Cameron was able to put some runs on the board themselves, striking for a four run inning in the top of the fifth. CU loaded the bases on a hit by pitch and two singles with one out in the inning, and then Long got things started with a RBI groundout that scored Kaylyn Smith from third. In the next at bat, Callie Busby singled to the WT shortstop to plate Annie Combes and put runners on first and third to tie the game.
Now presented with a brand new ballgame, head coach Dennis Furr pulled out some of his tricks and the Busby twin duo pulled off a double steal to give Cameron their first lead of the game at 3-2. In the next at bat, T. Smith came in to pinch hit, again with two outs, and the senior singled to shallow left center to bring in the fourth run of the inning.
Willmon then closed out the game facing just one over the minimum in the final two innings, despite giving up a solo homer in the bottom of the seventh, to keep the Aggies season going with a 4-3 win. The junior went the distance for her 17th win of the season.
Cameron was out hit 10-5, but those five hits came when they mattered most. All five came from five different CU batters, while all four of their runs came from four different Aggies and all three RBI came off the bat of three different hitters.
The Aggies, who are now 32-19, will take on the No. 2 seed in the region Angelo State for the Regional Championship on Saturday, May 12. Game one will begin at 1:30 p.m. and if CU wins, the two teams will play another game to decide who advances to the Super Regional.