MAGNOLIA, Ark. – Augustana’s NCAA Central Regional run came to an end on Friday night under the lights at Dawson Field in Magnolia, Ark., as Minnesota State used a three-run fifth inning to build a 5-1 lead over the Vikings that they could not overcome in an 8-4 loss to the defending national champions.
The loss ends the Vikings season with a 42-15 record, while the Mavericks advance to take on No. 2 seed Southern Arkansas in the NCAA Central Region 2 Championship on Saturday at 1 p.m. with a 35-18 record.
The Mavericks batted first, and plated one run on three hits to take the early 1-0 lead, but it vanished quickly, as Kylie Rome smashed the equalizer over the left field fence in the Vikings half of the first to tie the game at 1-1.
Minnesota State fired right back with a run in the second to go back up 2-1, and then added three more in the top of the fifth to go up 5-1, including a Carly Esselman solo home run to right center field, and then three more sixth to go up 8-1.
The Vikings got back into the game in the sixth, getting an RBI double from Maggie Kadrlik that scored Shannon Petersen and a two-run home run from Morgan Beaner to cut the lead to 8-4, but they would get no closer
Caitlin Stone picked up the win in the circle for the Mavericks to improve to 9-3, while Ashley Mickschl took the loss to wrap up an award-winning freshman campaign with a 20-8 record.
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