North Dakota State Takes Two on Saturday, Wins Sixth Straight Tournament Title

North Dakota State, 2019 Summit League Softball Tournament Champions. Photo Courtesy Nick Nelson
North Dakota State, 2019 Summit League Softball Tournament Champions. Photo Courtesy Nick Nelson

FARGO, N.D. – The North Dakota State Bison won its sixth consecutive Summit League Tournament Championship on Saturday after earning two victories against the South Dakota Coyotes.

CHAMPIONSHIP GAME 1

North Dakota State switched things up offensively between Friday's game vs South Dakota and today's first game. After not bunting against the Yotes on Friday, the Bison opened Saturday's championship game playing small ball, with four bunts in the first inning which helped NDSU jump out to an early lead and set the tone of the game.

Bison freshman pitcher Paige Vargas followed up an impressive outing in game two on Friday with an equally impressive game today. Vargas allowed just two hits in the first four innings on her way to her second consecutive Summit League Softball Championship complete game shutout. Behind the arm of Vargas and the Bison bats, NDSU forced a game two to decide the champion of the Summit League.

How It Happened

Inning

Score

Play

T1

0-3

Madyson Camacho drove in Katie Shoulz with a triple down the left field line. Vanessa Anderson then laid down a bunt to allow Camacho to score after the umpires called catcher interference on USD. Later in the inning a Cara Beatty single to left and a fielding error by the left fielder allowed Anderson to score

T6

0-5

Following a 46-minute rain delay the Bison extended their lead to five on a Cara Beatty double to right center that scored Anderson and Camacho

T7

0-6

NDSU scored again in the final frame on a solo shot to left center from Sam Koehn

 

Pitchers of Record

Win – Paige Vargas (16-4): 7 IP, 5 hits, 0 earned runs, 1 strikeout, 0 walk

Loss – Alexis Devers (13-14): 5.2 IP, 9 hits, 4 earned runs, 2 strikeout, 6 walks

 

Notable Notes

• This is the fourth time in the tournament that a team has scored at least three runs in the top of the first inning. Teams improved to 4-0 in those games. NDSU improves to 2-0 in those games

• With two outs in the sixth, the game went into a rain delay that lasted 46 minutes

• NDSU left eight runners on base while USD left five

• USD didn't have a runner advance past second base

• Attendance: 341

 

CHAMPIONSHIP GAME 2

The second game of the day began with South Dakota getting runners to second and third, but after NDSU was able to get out of the jam, the Bison wasted little time grabbing a lead against the Coyotes. An RBI single to left field from Maddie Hansen proved to be the game-winning RBI in the contest as runs were at a premium.

The story, just like in game one and throughout the tournament, was Paige Vargas. The true freshman from Mission Viejo, Calif. was lights out. After pitching a complete game on Friday against SDSU in an elimination game and another complete game in game one on Saturday, Vargas picked up right where she left off in the final game of the Summit League Championship. Dating back to a May 5, a relief appearance against North Dakota, Vargas pitched 20.1 straight innings without allowing a run. Vargas completed her third game in two days and earned tournament MVP honors.

How It Happened

Inning

Score

Play

B1

1-0

NDSU scored first on a Hansen RBI single to left that scored Camacho

B3

3-0

The Bison tacked two more runs, the first on an RBI single up the middle from Camacho that scored Montana DeCamp. The Bison's second run came on a single to the left side from Cara Beatty that's scored Camacho

T6

3-1

South Dakota got on the board on a single to right center from Lauren Eamiguel that scored Dustie Durham

 

Pitchers of Record

Win – Paige Vargas (17-4): 7 IP, 6 hits, 1 earned run, 4 strikeouts, 2 walks

Loss – Dustie Durham (14-9): 2.2 IP, 4 hits, 2 earned runs, 1 strikeout, 2 walks

 

Notable Notes

• Paige Vargas becomes the fourth freshman to be named the tournament's MVP joining NDSU's KK Leddy (2016) and Whitney Johnson (2010) and Western Illinois' Nikki Marinec (2008)

• In the Summit League tournament Vargas pitched 19.1 consecutive shutout innings, including 12.1 on championship Saturday, earning three wins for the Bison

• This is North Dakota State's sixth consecutive tournament championship and its 10th all-time

• North Dakota State left nine runners on base while South Dakota left seven on base

• NDSU improves to 3-1 in championship games where they must win two on the final day

 

2019 All-Tournament Team

Payton Abbott, Western Illinois

Jailene Carpio, North Dakota

Abby Baez, Purdue Fort Wayne

Lauren Watson, Purdue Fort Wayne

Mallory McQuistan, South Dakota State

Kendra Conard, South Dakota State

Julia Andersen, South Dakota State

Alexis Devers, South Dakota

Dustie Durham, South Dakota

Alyssa Fernandez, South Dakota

Jessica Rogers, South Dakota

Paige Vargas, North Dakota State – MVP

Madyson Camacho, North Dakota State

Maddie Hansen, North Dakota State

Katie Shoultz, North Dakota State

Vanessa Anderson, North Dakota State

Up Next

As the champion of the Summit League Tournament, the North Dakota State Bison will learn their NCAA post season destination on Sunday, May 12 during the NCAA Selection Show.

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