SALT LAKE CITY – CSI softball wrapped up its first game in the Region 18 tournament in just six innings, beating USU Eastern by a score of 14-6.
The Golden Eagles won all eight of their matchups with USU Eastern during the regular season, but the Eagles from Utah looked like formidable opponents early.
USU Eastern jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning on a two-run home run. CSI plated seven runs in the bottom of the second, but USU Eastern cut the deficit to 7-5 after four innings.
The Golden Eagles responded at the plate in what turned out to be their final two at-bats.
Cleanup hitter Nicole Renner smacked a solo home run in the bottom of the fifth, then the Magic Valley tandem of Courtney Argyle (Jerome High School) and Madi Ford (Twin Falls High School) each knocked in a run.
Melanie Groenewegen and Renner hit back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the sixth inning, then catcher Haylee Eskelson ended the game early with a “walk-off” single that put CSI up eight runs.
Renner finished the game 3-for-3 with two home runs, two RBIs and a walk, Groenewegen finished 2-for-4 with a home run, a double and four RBIs, and Ford finished 2-for-4 with two RBIs and a stolen base.
CSI advances to take on host Salt Lake Community College at 2:30 p.m. Thursday. The Bruins, ranked second in the country, beat the Golden Eagles in six of their eight regular season matchups, outscoring CSI 53-33 along the way.
CSI 14, USU Eastern 6 (6 innings)
USUE 2 0 1 2 0 1 —6 10 4
CSI 0 7 0 0 3 4 —14 14 0
CSI: Pitching – Samantha Riesen (W) 3.1 IP, 5 H, 2 K, 3 BB, 5 R, 5 ER; Stefani Zimmerman 2.2 IP, 5 H, 1 BB, 1 R, 1 ER.
Leading hitters – Nicole Renner 3-3, 2 HR, 2 RBI, BB; Melanie Groenewegen 2-4, HR, 2B, 4 RBI; Erin Emanuel 1-2, 2B, RBI, 2 BB; Madi Ford 2-4, 2 RBI, SB.