Photo by Jayson Ortiz
CENTRAL ARKANSAS 5, KANSAS 4 (8)
FORT COLLINS, CO — Tremere Harris reached base in the bottom of the eighth, got all the way to third base on a sacrifice bunt and scored on a single from Reagan Sperling as Central Arkansas slipped past Kansas in Sunday’s second game of the 2022 NISC.
With Harris on third, Kansas intentionally walked two runners to load the bases, but Sperling bounced a single over the head of the pitcher to drive in Harris. The Sugar Bears, the No. 4 seed in the tournament, moved to 36-20 on the year.
Kansas, which entered the 2022 NISC as the No. 12 seed, will play Monday in an elimination game against Stephen F. Austin.
Kansas (17-35) loaded the bases to start the top of the first inning with a single and two walks; Olivia Bruno walked to bring in a run, and Savanna DesRochers drove in two runs with a single, and that prompted a pitching change by Central Arkansas. Kayla Beaver doused the threat with three straight strikeouts for the Sugar Bears, and they responded right back in the bottom of the frame with a three-run homer from Jaylee Englkes.
In the top of the seventh, Kansas got a single from Bruno, and another runner reached when Haleigh Harper was hit by a pitch with one out. Beaver struck out the next batter, and after a groundout, the margin was still 4-3 for KU. Beaver allowed six hits on the day to go with eight strikeouts in eight innings of work.
In the bottom of the seventh, Sperling reached first, was sacrificed to second and took third on a groundout. She scored on an error to shortstop, tying the game at 4-all.