TU Drops NAIA Tourney Opener to No. 14 Corban in Extra Innings
COLUMBIA, Ky. – After taking a 5-1 lead into the fifth inning, the Taylor softball team allowed 10 unanswered runs to 14th-ranked Corban and eventually fell, 11-7, in nine innings in the first game of the NAIA National Tournament Opening Round at Lindsey Wilson on Monday afternoon.
TU got off to a strong start, as Courtney Moriarty had surrendered just one hit through three innings, which was a solo home run in the top of the third, while plating four runs in the bottom of the third to take a 4-1 lead. Alex Lovelace’s double scored Kuizin for the first Trojan run of the game, before Hannah Castor’s double scored Lovelace to make it a 2-1 Taylor lead. Two batters later, Moriarty drove in final two runs of the frame with a base knock.
Moriarty held the Warrior (41-11) bats in check once again in the fourth, before TU added another run in the home-half on Lovelace’s second hit of the contest, giving the Trojans a 5-1 lead entering the fifth inning.
Corban’s offense woke up in the ensuing innings, however, as CU blasted two-run shots in both the fifth and sixth innings to tie the game at five apiece.
Moriarty pitched around a lead-off walk in the top of the seventh, keeping the Warriors off the board to give the Trojans a chance to win in the bottom of the frame.
TU went down 1-2-3 in the seventh to send the game into extra innings.
The two teams combined for only one baserunner in the eighth stanza, bringing the game to the ninth inning deadlocked at 5-5.
Corban then exploded for six runs in the ninth to put Taylor in an 11-5 hole with three outs to go.
The Trojans had runners on first and second with one out in the ninth, when a wild throw by CU scored Cassie Kuizin from second. Anna Gunderson scored the seventh and final TU run of the outing on a groundout by Castor, making the 11-7 final tally.
Lovelace and Castor led the Trojans with identical days at the plate, as each went 2-5 at the dish with a run scored and two runs driven in. Kuizin added two hits and a pair of runs, while Moriarty collected two RBI and went the distance inside the circle.
RV Taylor (38-17) will face the loser between No. 6 Lindsey Wilson (39-11) and Madonna (30-14) at 3:30 pm (ET) on Tuesday, May 16.