Islanders fall to Texas State in Southland Tournament finals
HUNTSVILLE, Texas - The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi softball team came up short in the championship round of the 2011 Southland Conference Tournament as they fell by an 8-5 final against Texas State on Saturday. Catcher Brittany Tucker, second baseman Caley Jeter and pitcher Jordan Trujillo were named to the all-tournament team for their performances at the event.
The Islanders record moves to 41-19 on the season while Texas State is now 33-23 on the year.
Starter Greta Cecchetti took the loss, pitching 4.1 innings and giving up five runs, three of them earned, on six hits while walking three and striking out two batters. The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi pitching staff struggled in the game as they had to play their fourth game in two days.
The Islanders opened the scoring in the first on a Tucker solo home run to center for a 1-0 lead.
Tucker did it again in the bottom of the third with her their homer in as many at-bats. Lauren Sanders led off the inning with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Jeter. She moved to third on a ground out before coming home on Tucker's third home shot of the day. She hit a 3-1 pitch off the top of the scoreboard to give her team a 3-0 lead.
The three home runs tied a Southland Conference Tournament record with her three home runs at the event.
Texas State rallied for five runs in the top of the fifth to grab a 5-3 advantage and added three more runs in the sixth for an 8-3 lead.
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi chipped into the lead in the bottom of the sixth to make it 8-5. Sandy Schumann singled and advanced to second on a Cassie Redman single. Sanders followed by reaching on a fielder's choice and moving up on an error while Redman was out at second. Jeter then came to the plate and singled through the right side to score Schumann and Sanders and pull their team to within three runs.
The Islanders were unable to get any more runs in the bottom of the seventh as Texas State clinched the tournament championship and automatic NCAA bid.
The team will now wait and see if just their second-ever 40-win season and a regular season Southland Conference Championship will be enough for them to receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament.