NISC Championship Round: Game 5
Championship Round Day 2
IOWA STATE 5, LOYOLA MARYMOUNT 2
FORT COLLINS, CO – Taylor Nearad drilled a bases-loaded double into center field with two outs in the top of the seventh, driving in three runs and cementing Iowa State’s rally as the Cyclones slipped past Loyola Marymount in an elimination game for the 2019 NISC.
The victory sends Iowa State (37-24) into Sunday’s title game against UT Arlington at 12 p.m. MT. The Cyclones will have to beat the Mavericks twice in this double-elim bracket.
In the seventh, Mikayla Ramos was hit by a pitch from Linnay Wilson, who had pitched two perfect innings of relief to that point. After a sacrifice bunt, an infield error and a strikeout, LMU (40-21) chose to intentionally walk leadoff hitter Sami Williams, which loaded the bases and brought up Nearad. With two strikes, she laced a shot to center to score three runs. Talyn Lewis put the bat on the ball next, and on an error, another run scored, making it 5-2 for the Cyclones.
Emma Hylen pitched 2 1/3 innings in relief for ISU, allowing one hit and one walk, striking out four batters. Savannah Sanders threw a great game as the starter for the Cyclones as well, allowing four hits in 4 2/3 innings.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Lions got two runners on base, but a tapper to Hylen was tossed to first for the final out. This is the most victories for an Iowa State team since 1989.
Both teams scored early; Williams doubled and scored on a Lewis grounder for ISU, and Megan Martin homered for Loyola Marymount. With the score tied at 1-all, LMU put runners on second and third with two outs, and Maddison Flores punched in a single to score Sierra Marshall and take a 2-1 lead.