May 25, 2004
Decatur, Al.- In the fourth day of action at the 2004 NAIA Softball National Championships at Wilson Morgan Park in Decatur , Alabama , 2nd ranked and defending national champion Simon Fraser University defeated number one Thomas University 4-3 in eight innings to move Thomas to the loser’s bracket.
Simon Fraser remains the only undefeated team in the tournament and earns their spot in the championship game at 1:00pm on Wednesday.
In the ninth extra-inning game of the tournament, Simon Fraser and Thomas created a game true of their seedings.
The Clan from Simon Fraser placed runs on the scoreboard first in the bottom of the second inning when junior Kim Rossiter (0-for-4) reached on a misplaced grounder by Yuruby Alicart.
Pitcher Erin Thomas (2-for-4) later reached on a bunt for a base hit. After advancing to third base on a wild throw, Rossiter scored on a sacrifice fly by Jes Neilson (1-for-3).
In the top of the fifth inning, Thomas answered with two runs to tie the game.
Left fielder Delena Green (0-for-3) began the inning with a base on balls.
Alicart reached on a fielding error, advancing Green to second base.
Both base runners advanced one base on a passed ball by Rossiter.
With one out in the inning, shortstop Stephanie Dixon (3-for-4) singled to shallow right-center field to score Green and Alicart.
The Lady Night Hawks took the lead in the top half of the seventh when senior Tania Black hit Thomas' first homerun of the tournament to give the Lady Night Hawks a 3-2 lead.
Simon Fraser would battle back in the bottom half of the inning to tie the game at 3-3.
The game-winning run came in the bottom of the eighth inning as Thomas singled to shallow center field.
Neilson followed with a single advancing Thomas, who was then advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Paige Stevens (0-for-0).
Center fielder Erin Gee hit a sacrifice fly to left field to score Thomas.
Erin Thomas, 2003 All-American, earned the victory to improve her record to 31-1 on the season.
In eight innings pitched, Thomas allowed three earned runs while striking out eight batters in the game.
Junior Cathy Andrijaszyn suffered the loss for Thomas, dropping her record to 26-2 on the season.
Thomas will now play Oklahoma City University at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday.
If the Night Hawks win the game, Thomas would advanced to the NAIA National Championship game against Simon Fraser.
Thomas would have to defeat Simon Fraser twice to claim its first national title in school history.
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