Minnesota Crookston falls to 3-5 on the season.

WEST ST. PAUL, Minn. — The dome games continued this morning for head coach Travis Owen and his University of Minnesota Crookston softball team. The Golden Eagles wrapped up their trip to the state of Minnesota’s capital with two games against Southwest Minnesota State and Bemidji State.

    The first opponent of the day was the Mustangs of Southwest Minnesota State. A fast start for the Golden Eagles wasn’t enough, as they fell 7-6 to the Mustangs.

    The loss drops the Golden Eagles to 3-4 on the young season. The Mustangs remain undefeated on the season at 3-0 with the win.

    There have been a few trends early on in the new era of Golden Eagles softball, one of which being the fast starts for Minnesota Crookston. This morning’s game turned out to be no different, as they Golden Eagles jumped out to a 3-0 lead through the first two innings.

    The home team on the scoreboard, the Golden Eagles tallied the first run on a Rocky Bjorge (Sr., 1B/3B, Prior Lake, Minn.) sacrifice fly that scored Mikaela Rodriguez (Jr., 2B/SS, Laveen, Ariz.).

    The Golden Eagles would put up a crooked number in the second inning. Maggie Morales (Sr., IF/OF, Tuscon, Ariz.) singled up the middle, which scored Hannah Macias (Fr., OF, West Covina, Calif.) and Haley Strachan (Sr., OF, Phoenix, Ariz.), to put the Golden Eagles up 3-0.

    The Mustangs would answer back with seven runs in the fourth and fifth innings, including a three-run homerun from Abbie Decker, the Mustangs leadoff hitter.

    The Golden Eagles wouldn’t go away. Leah Macias (Fr., OF, West Covina, Calif.) started to chip away into the SMSU lead by doubling. Darian Pancirov (Fr., P/1B, Las Vegas, Nev.) scored on a throwing error, making it 7-4.

    The Golden Eagles were able to make it 7-6, but the Mustangs held off the furious late inning Golden Eagle rally.

    The Golden Eagles were led by their top-two hitters, Rodriguez, who continues to hit the ball well, collecting a hit in five of the seven Golden Eagles games to start the season. Rodriguez collected two hits, while Malia Pula (Jr., OF, Gilroy, Calif.) went 3-4 in the game with one RBI. Morales drove in three runs as well. Leah Macias collected her first multi-hit game as a Golden Eagle, going 2-4.

    In the circle, Paige Pitlick (Jr., P/1B, Jordan, Minn.) got the loss after giving up six runs on nine hits and she struck out five Mustangs in 3.2 innings pitched. Pitlick did only give up two earned runs. Taylor Graven came in relief and went 3.1 innings while giving up just one run, while striking out one.

    The Golden Eagles would look to bounce back against the Beavers of Bemidji State. The Beavers defeated Minnesota Crookston 5-3 just a day earlier.

    Bemidji State shutout the Golden Eagles for the first time this season, 6-0.

   With the loss, Minnesota Crookston falls to 3-5 on the season, while the Beavers improve to 3-1.

    The Beavers would score runs in the second, fourth and sixth innings, including three in the fourth and two in the sixth.

    The Golden Eagles did tally eight hits in the game. Eight starters in the lineup had one hit a piece. Bjorge and Jordan Peterson (So., C/UT, Lakeville, Minn.) each had a double in the game.

    Mikayla Jones (Sr., P, Huxley, Iowa) picked up the loss after going 3.1 IP, while allowing 4 runs on seven hits. Jones falls to 1-1 on the season.

    The Golden Eagles are off for 10 days before heading back out to Minot, N.D., for four games with Minnesota State University Moorhead, UMary, Valley City State University and Minot State University.