ST. GEORGE, UTAH — The Chipola softball team took its first loss of the NJCAA Division I Softball Championship tournament on Thursday afternoon, falling to No. 7 seed Eastern Arizona 4-3 in eight innings.
The No. 2 seed Lady Indians (49-3) led 3-1 after six innings, but Eastern Arizona (54-10) extended the game with a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh thanks to an RBI single by Lena Kotrys and an RBI sacrifice fly by Czarina Lorta.
Vesi Liilii’s solo home run to left field in the bottom of the eighth inning gave the Gila Monsters the walk-off win. They advanced to Friday’s semifinal round game against Temple (Tex.). Chipola fell into the losers’ bracket to face South Georgia State/Howard (Tex.) late Thursday night.
Pania Monk started in the circle for Eastern Arizona and went all eight innings to get the win, giving up three earned runs on six hits and three walks with seven strikeouts. Krystal Goodman started for Chipola and allowed two earned runs on four hits and four walks with two strikeouts in six innings. Morgan Goree took the loss for surrendering two earned runs on two hits in an inning of work.
Candela Figueroa led the Lady Indians offensively, going 3 for 4 with a double, a run, and an RBI, while Lauren Finch was 1 for 3 with an RBI. Barbara Woll and Amy Woodham each had a hit and scored a run.
The Lady Indians won their tournament opener Wednesday 15-0 over Central Alabama in five innings. Alexis Grampp led Chipola in that win, going 3 for 5 with a home run, two doubles, five RBI, and three runs. Woll, Finch, and Madison Kent also homered. Goodman got the victory, pitching 3 1/3 scoreless innings and allowing two hits while striking out five.