2016 NCAA Division III National Champions
RECAP: No. 1 @Patriot_sb wins series over No. 3 ETBU
#1 UT Tyler (17-2, 10-2 ASC)
#3 East Texas Baptist (15-2, 10-2 ASC)
3/9/2017 | Marshall, Texas | Attendance: 379
UT Tyler10012037121
East Texas Baptist0210001491
Win: Miranda Leal (1-0) 5.041013
Loss: M.Hendrix (0-1) 4.274400
KK Stevens (UTTSB) 313211
L.Vasquez (ETBU) 403200

Thursday, March 9, 2017
by Wes Bloomquist || wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

MARSHALL – Cheyenne Thompson blasted a two-out, two-run home run to give No. 1-ranked UT Tyler a 4-3 lead over No. 3 East Texas Baptist in the fifth inning and the Patriots would add three more runs in the seventh as they earned a 7-4 series finale win over the Tigers on Thursday at Taylor Field.

UT Tyler (16-2, 10-2 ASC) won the series 2-1 over ETBU (15-2, 10-2 ASC) and is now in third place in the American Southwest Conference standings behind Louisiana College (14-2, 11-1 ASC) and UT Dallas (16-3, 8-1 ASC) with six weeks remaining in the regular season. 

“I thought the team showed great resolve in all three games,” UT Tyler head coach Mike Reed said. “Playing in such close games helps show areas we need to improve in, but it was great to see some of our team come through in such pressure situations. We have not played out best softball yet, but I like the experience we are getting.”

Miranda Leal (1-0) earned her first career win by throwing five innings of relief where she scattered four hits and allowed only one run in the seventh before getting a groundout to strand two Tigers on base. A freshman from San Antonio, Leal had three strikeouts in her sixth appearance of the season after coming into the game in the third inning for starter Alaina Kissinger. The Patriots, who scored first with a KK Stevens single that brought home Kaylee Prather in the first inning, would trail 3-1 through three innings after the Tigers scored two in the second and one in the third before Leal shut the door and allowed the comeback to unfold.

Stevens would hit her fifth home run of the season and the 23rd of her career to lead off the fourth to cut the deficit to 3-2 before Thompson’s homer in the fifth. The eventual game-winner was set up by Andrea Gonzales who led the inning off with a double to right field before a fly out and ground out had the Tigers one out away from getting out of trouble. Thompson, who now leads the team with 27 RBI, belted her fifth home run the season and seventh of her career to give the Patriots the lead.

Bianca Van Vlerah would spark a three-run seventh inning with a one-out single and was followed by a two-out walk by Stevens. With two on and two outs, Mel Hinojosa delivered an RBI single to left field for the first run of the inning and was followed by Courtney Fisher who hit a run-scoring double. Hannah Moore delivered an infield single to bring in Alyssa Henry who had run for Hinojosa to make it 7-3.

Stevens led the Patriots in the game by going 3-for-3 with the home run and two RBI, while Fisher and Prather were both 2-for-4 in the series finale. Prather would finish the series with a team-leading four hits against the Tigers, while Stevens was 3-for-6 with three RBI and four walks in Marshall.

UT Tyler will return to action with a non-conference doubleheader against DePauw starting at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday at Suddenlink Field before hosting Howard Payne next weekend in a three-game ASC series. The Patriots are beginning a nine-game home stand when they host DePauw on Sunday morning.