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February 16, 2013

Rally Falls Just Short As Softball Drops Home-Opener, 8-7

GOLDEN – Upper Iowa plated runs in three of the first four innings, including five in the fourth and withstood a late surge from the Colorado School of Mines, spoiling the Orediggers' 2013 home-opener at the CSM Softball Field.

Trailing 8-4 heading into the bottom of the sixth, Mines brought the score within two as junior Melissa Marshall reached on a one-out single through the right side. Freshman pinch-runner Dana Gallegos then advanced to second on a walk by sophomore Paige Coufal and scored on an RBI double to right center from sophomore Cassie Ford. Following a pitching change, freshman Elise Dugwyler brought home junior pinch-runner Morgan Anderson.

In the seventh, junior Courtney Derus led off with a double to left and took third on a fielding miscue by the leftfielder. Junior Sami Springer then snuck a one-out base hit through the left side, scoring Derus to bring the Orediggers within 8-7. Just as in the previous inning, Marshall singled and Coufal drew a free pass, loading the bases, but the tying run would remaining 60 feet away as the Peacocks (1-0) induced a routine fly out to right to win their season-opener.

Mines (7-2-1) stranded five base runners over the final three innings, four of which were in scoring position, including a runner on third base in each frame.

Springer and Marshall finished with six of the team's 12 hits, each going 3-for-4. Marshall scored once, while Springer drove in one and scored a pair.

Ford and senior Kamee Vessey both collected their third multi-hit efforts with two hits in four plate appearances. Vessey smacked her team-leading third home run in the third, a two-out, solo shot to right center on a 3-2 count and the ninth pitch of the at-bat.

In addition to her run-scoring two-bagger in the sixth, Ford had an RBI double to center in the home half of the second that evened the score at 2-2.

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