The split gives UMC a record of 4-8.

CLERMONT, Fla. – The University of Minnesota Crookston softball team picked up a split on opening day at The Spring Games – PFX Athletics in Clermont, Fla. The Golden Eagles opened the day with a 5-2 win over Post University and fell 5-4 in the night-cap to University of Charleston.

    UMC  obtained the 4-2 lead in the top of the fourth against the Post Eagles when Maggie Morales (Jr., 1B/OF, Tucson, Ariz.) doubled to drive in Rocky Bjorge (So., 1B, Prior Lake, Minn.) and Jenna Boardman (Sr., SS/2B, Genoa, Wis.). UMC came away with the 5-2 win.

    In the second game, the Golden Eagles fell behind 5-1 in the top of the seventh as Charleston scored two runs in their half. Minnesota Crookston put up a comeback with three runs in the bottom of the seventh, but they would strand the game-tying run in the form of Boardman on second. UMC moves to 4-8 with Sunday’s split.

Game 1 vs. Post

    Mikayla Jones (Jr., RHP, Huxley, Minn.) got the win in relief for Minnesota Crookston after going four innings in relief, and giving up no runs on one hit with two strikeouts and two walks. Jones moves to 3-2 on the season. Luisa Silvain (Jr., RHP, Tucson, Ariz.) continued her strong start to the season with an impressive outing as she started in the circle. Silvain went three innings and gave up just one earned run on five hits.

    Minnesota Crookston looked to Gabriel Antolak (Sr., C/3B, Zimmerman, Minn.) at the plate as he was 1-of-3 with two RBIs and one run scored, including a solo home run. Maycee Trujillo (Jr., 3B/C, Sioux Falls, S.D.) went 1-of-3 with one RBI, while Boardman was 1-of-2 with one run and Morales was 1-of-3 with two RBIs.

    Minnesota Crookston got on the board right away in the top of the first as Antolak crossed the dish on a Trujillo ground out to second base. Victoria Bayliss (Sr., OF, West Bloomfield, Mich.) scored later in the inning after Khailyn Neumayer (Sr., OF, Morgan Hill, Calif.) stole second and Bayliss took home to put the Golden Eagles ahead 2-0.

    The Eagles cut the lead to 2-1 when Demi Rivera hit a sacrifice fly to center field to drive in Emily Schaffer. Post knotted the game up 2-2 in the bottom of the third as Rivera singled to plate Schaffer.

    Minnesota Crookston got the runs back with the bases loaded when Morales came up and doubled in Bjorge and Boardman as UMC regained the lead 4-2.

    UMC gained a security run in the top of the seventh as Antolak blasted her second home run of the season to move the advantage to 5-2.

    Jones came up big in the circle as she got the three out for a 5-2 win.

Game 2 vs. Charleston

    Kassidy Klaphake (Sr., RHP, Cold Spring, Minn.) got the start in the circle against Charleston for Minnesota Crookston. Klaphake would suffer the loss after giving up one earned run on two hits with 1.2 innings of work. Heather Cunningham (Sr., RHP, Jacksonville, Fla.) saw work in relief as she allowed one earned run on two hits in 1.1 innings. Paige Pitlick (So., RHP, Jordan, Minn.) followed Cunningham and gave up one run on two hits in three innings. Jones then wrapped up the game as she allowed two runs on two hits in one inning with two strikeouts.

    UMC was led by Taylor Allen (Fr., C/OF, Neepawa, Manitoba), who went 3-of-4 with one RBI and one run scored. Mikaela Rodriguez (So., 2B/SS, Laveen, Ariz.) finished 2-of-4 with one RBI and two runs scored, while Boardman was 2-of-2 with two RBIs.

    Charleston got the board first in the top of the first as Kendall Marshall reached on an error by Boardman at short stop, as Karli Pinkerton came around to score.

    The Charleston Golden Eagles added a run in the top of the third as Ume singled to plate Ann-Judie Martin.

    UMC cut the lead to 2-1 as Boardman walked with the bases loaded to score Rodriguez. UMC still had the bases loaded, but Charleston struck out Bjorge and Trujillo to keep the score at 2-1.

    Charleston added a security run in the top of the fourth when Harrington hit a solo shot over the fence to move the lead to 3-1.

    The Charleston Golden Eagles added a pair of runs in the top of the seventh. Haleigh Christopher opened the inning with a triple. She came around to score as Ume doubled to move the lead to 4-1. Ume came into score on an Emily Dutton sacrifice line out to center field to extend the advantage to 5-1.

    UMC responded as Rodriguez doubled to plate Bayliss to cut the deficit to 5-2. With two outs, Allen came through with a single to drive in Rodriguez to move UMC closer at 5-3. Boardman then doubled in Allen to make it 5-4. However, Charleston got the final out of the game.

    UMC will look to continue their strong play Mon., March 12 as they play three games in Leesburg, Fla. The Golden Eagles open the day at 8 a.m. C.T. against Concordia University (Mich.). They then face Indiana University-South Bend at 1 p.m. C.T. They conclude the day against Southern Connecticut State at 6 p.m.