FARGO, N.D. – The IPFW softball team fell 3-1 to the North Dakota State Bison in a game that would have clinched the Summit League Tournament title for the Mastodons, setting up a winner-take-all tournament finale on Sunday at 11:30 a.m. ET against the same Bison squad.
Larissa Franklin was 3-for-4 at the plate, as the Mastodons totaled 10 hits in 31 at-bats, while draing a walk and two hit batters; however, the team left a dozen on base in the two-run loss.
Miranda Kramer gave up one earned run over her seven innings, scattering six hits while striking out eight.
The teams engaged in a pitcher’s duel through the first five innings of the game, before the Bison pushed two runs across the plate, aided by an error in the outfield. A walk, sacrifice bunt, and single scored the third and final North Dakota State run an inning later, putting the Bison ahead 3-0.
Franklin opened the bottom of the seventh inning with an infield single, before advancing to second on the play when the Bison left the base unattended. A batter later, Ashleigh Bousquet singled through the right side, scoring Franklin, and cutting the gap to two. A double play followed, clearing the bases, before Hillary Kartman and Beka Ferguson hit back-to-back singles, putting runners on the corners. The inning ended, however, with a strikeout – NDSU starting pitcher Krista Menke’s 10th of the game.
The loss drops IPFW to 40-14 on the year, while Kramer falls to 20-9 in the pitcher’s circle.