DES MOINES, Iowa – The Concordia softball team fell just short on Sunday afternoon to 23rd-ranked Grand View University. The Vikings won both of the double-header contests in the bottom of the final inning with a score of 5-4.
Concordia is now 25-10 on the season while Grand View improves to 30-6.
Head coach Todd LaVelle said, “These two hurt. Whenever you take the lead in the seventh inning, you expect to win and we found a way to lose both of them. It was disappointing. I’ll take the loss as the coach. We will learn from it and prepare the girls for more pressure situations in the future.”
After three innings of play, the Bulldogs led the Vikings 4-1 in the first half of the twin bill. Bri Liebelt and Diana Mendoza each singled in the third and then advanced a base each on a wild pitch. Kylie Harpst then got an RBI double scoring Liebelt. Taylor Huff came to the plate with two outs and hit a three-run homer to bring Mendoza and Harpst home. Coming down to the seventh, the Bulldogs held a 5-2 lead. With two outs the Vikings hit a three-run, walk-off homer to win the game, 5-4.
Harpst pitched for Concordia the entire game and recorded two strikeouts.
In the second game, the ‘Dogs led off scoring three runs. The tallies came by the way of another three-run home run this time from Michaela Woodward. After full six innings, the score was tied at three. Megan Ruppert singled to center field to score Jamie Lefebure. The Bulldogs again had the lead going into the final half inning. With one out, a Viking hit a sacrifice fly to right field to tie the score up again at four. The bases were loaded with two outs and Grand View was able to draw a walk to advance all runners and score the winning run.
In the circle for the Bulldogs was Woodward who pitched 3.2 innings. AJ Wygant took over for the remainder of the game. Each pitcher struck out two Vikings in the tilt.
As a team over the two games, the Bulldogs recorded 14 hits with Liebelt and Huff leading the squad with three each. The pair also led the team in scoring, each crossing the plate twice.
“We can’t dwell on the negatives. The positive part is we know we can hang with good teams and take that with us into the last games of the season,” LaVelle said.
The Bulldog softball team will return to the diamond this Wednesday. Concordia will travel to Lincoln to take on Nebraska Wesleyan in a GPAC double-header beginning at 5 p.m.