The No. 7 seed Toledo softball team went down to the wire with No. 2 seed Kent State at Firestone Stadium in Akron, Ohio tonight and managed to upset the Golden Flashes for the second time this week, winning 2-1 in game three of the Mid-American Conference tournament. Sophomore Erin Hunt pitched her second complete-game of the tournament for her 14th season win, and senior Katie Cozy homered in her first at-bat to score the game-winning runs. Tonight's win was the second time Toledo upset the Golden Flashes this week after beating them 4-2 in the tournament opener.
"I don't know what to say really," head coach Joe Abraham said. "A week ago we were fighting to get into the tournament and now all of a sudden we're in the final three; it's all happened so fast that it's hard to digest. This whole tournament has been really neat for me but this isn't about me, it's about the team. They beat Kent State and now our seniors get to play on Saturday."
Cozy's dinger today tied for fifth-most homers in a single Toledo season while simultaneously moving her to fifth place in career home runs. She's also tied for 10th-most RBIs in a Toledo career. Hunt stood tall in the circle today as she pitched her 13th complete game of the season, recording six strikeouts and three walks. This is the 14th time this season that Hunt has struckout at least six batters in a game.
The Rockets survive to play No. 1 seed Miami tomorrow morning at 10:30 a.m. A win over the RedHawks would put Toledo in the championship game against No. 3 seed Ohio.
How it happened
• A pitcher's duel from start to finish, every batter in both the Rockets' and Golden Flashes' lineups had to stay strong at the plate from the first inning of a game that would feature 13 strikeouts and 16 batters left on the bases between the sides.
• Toledo opened with a groundout but senior Megan Choate earned a base-on-balls to put one on for the Rockets. Cozy then stepped up and hit a two-run homer over the centerfield fence to put the Rockets up 2-0 before the side was retired.
• From there the pitchers took over and limited the lineups to no more than one hit per half-inning until the fifth when Toledo hit back-to-back singles. Sophomore Ami Ill reached on a single to the six spot and sophomore Kylie Norwood beat the throw on a sac bunt, but they were left on the bags as the next three Rockets went down in order.
• Kent State put two on in the bottom of the fifth as the leadoff batter walked and Maria Cegledy singled up the gut, but a fielder's choice, pop up, and swinging strikeout left two on once again.
• KSU broke the shutout in the sixth inning with back-to-back doubles from Kennadie Goth and Kaitlyn Miller that made things 2-1 and put the Rockets on their toes. After Toledo went down in the top of the seventh off two swinging strikeouts and a fly out, the Golden Flashes looked to walk it off. The Rockets banded together though and took the side down in order to close the game and continue Toledo's championship run