FHSU roundup: Tiger softball swept, Brasser fifth at Central Regional Preview

FHSU Sports Information
FHSU's Hailey Chapman brings a pitch to the plate earlier this season. The Tigers were swept at Central Missouri on Tuesday.

WARRENSBURG, Mo. – Central Missouri rallied past Fort Hays State twice on Tuesday (Apr. 13) on its home field. The Jennies won both games of an MIAA doubleheader by a score of 4-2. The Tigers plated two runs in the first inning of both contests, only to see their slim leads slip away twice to the MIAA's top hitting team. UCM improved to 23-9 overall, 12-4 in the MIAA, while the Tigers moved to 16-16 overall, 9-5 in the MIAA.

Fort Hays State grabbed an early 2-0 lead in Game 1 and led all the way until the bottom of the sixth inning when Central Missouri slipped past with a three-run rally. Both teams finished with six hits in the game.

Loren Beggs put the Tigers on top 2-0 with a 2-out, 2-RBI double in the first inning. It plated both Lily Sale and Sara Breckbill, who reached with singles.

Central Missouri cut the lead in half in the second inning on a solo home run by Ashlyn Cook. Michaelanne Nelson was able to hold the Jennies at bay otherwise through five innings, but ran into trouble in the sixth. The Jennies began a rally with a walk, a double, and then a hit batter to load the bases. Jessica Sader plated two runs with a single to give the Jennies the lead, then Abby Allnutt added another single to score the third run of the inning.

Paige Petefish shut the Tigers down in relief, allowing just one hit over the final three innings. She worked a 1-2-3 seventh to keep the Tigers from building any kind of rally in response. Nelson took the loss in her complete-game effort, striking out four. The Tigers scored their two runs off UCM starter Sadie Parks, who threw the first four innings and allowed five hits, but struck out five.

Just like in game one, Fort Hays State took a 2-0 lead in the second game after a half inning only to see Central Missouri tie the game in the fourth and then take the lead in the fifth. The Tigers had six hits again, but the Jennies produced one more in the second contest with seven.

Katie Adler led off the game with a double and eventually came in to score on a Sara Breckbill RBI single. Loren Beggs drew a walk and then Jessica Espinoza drove home Breckbill with the second RBI single of the inning. The Tigers loaded the bases with two outs and chased UCM starter Gentry Wishard from the game, but reliever Kyleigh Lay stopped the Tigers from adding on with a strikeout to end the inning.

Central Missouri scored its first run in the second inning, just like game one, this time on an RBI single. The Jennies pulled even with the Tigers in the fourth when Jessica Sader hit a solo home run. After allowing a single to start the bottom of the fifth, Tiger starter Hailey Chapman got two infield pop ups to record two outs. However, right after the pop ups, UCM's Makenzie McAtee hit a two-run homer to put the Jennies in front with just two innings to go.

Lay made that lead stand up as she pitched the final 6.1 innings of the game to pick up a win. She allowed just three hits to the Tigers during her time in the circle and struck out six. Chapman threw a complete game for FHSU and struck out one.

The Tigers look to shake off the pair of tough losses as they remain in the thick of the race for the MIAA Tournament. They host Northwest Missouri State and Missouri Western in Hays on Saturday and Sunday (Apr. 17-18).

Brasser finishes fifth among strong field 

At Springfield, Mo., Fort Hays State freshman Morgan Brasser tied for fifth among a strong field of 84 golfers at the Central Region Preview, held at Twin Oaks Country Club in Springfield, Mo. The tournament featured six teams ranked among the Top 40 nationally.

Brasser elevated 16 places in the standings during round two of the tournament with a strong 2-over par 74, tying for the second-best round of the day. She filled up her scorecard with 16 pars and bogeyed just two holes. Josie Roberson of Arkansas Tech, who finished behind Brasser by three strokes, had the lowest round on Tuesday with an even-par 72. Brasser finished the tournament at 8-over par overall (78-74), just two strokes back of second-place finisher Nina Lee of Northeastern State. Susana Olivares of Central Oklahoma and Rosie Klausner of Central Missouri tied for third at 7-over par.

Jacqueline Klemm of Arkansas Tech won the tournament by six strokes, shooting even par overall. She shot 5-over par on the second day after shooting 5-under on the first day.

Kira Mestl finished in a tie for 59th after rounds of 86 and 80. Kerrigan Rudolph was 72nd with rounds of 88 and 89. Sydney Boxberger played in her first collegiate tournament and shot 109 and 102, tying for 83rd. With Boxberger added to the Tiger lineup, the Tigers were able to field a team score for the first time this season, posting scores of 361 and 345 to finish 16th.

Arkansas Tech, ranked 31st nationally, won the tournament as a team at 28-over par overall (604). Henderson State, ranked 34th, placed second at 41-over (617). Southwestern Oklahoma State, Central Oklahoma, and Northeastern State, all ranked within the Top 40 nationally, tied for third at 46-over.

Cowan posts lowest Round Tuesday at Southern Colorado Masters

In Pueblo, Colo., Bryce Cowan posted the lowest round of any golfer on Tuesday in the 54-man field of the Southern Colorado Masters, hosted by CSU-Pueblo at Pueblo Country Club, April 12-13. Cowan shot a 3-under par 68 in the final round, elevating 19 places in the standings into a tie for 25th individually at 8-over par overall.

After rounds of 80 and 73 at the par-71 venue, Cowan carded six birdies, nine pars, and three bogeys. He was 2-under on par fives and 1-under on par fours for the day. Cowan was one of eight players to shoot under par in the final round on Tuesday.

Marcus Willey, who led the Tigers in the opening round of the tournament with a 74, tied for 44th individually. He followed that with rounds of 76 and 79. Colton Bobek was steady throughout the tournament, shooting two rounds of 77 on the first day and then a 76 in the final round to tie for 46th. Tanner Copeland tied for 48th after rounds of 75, 84, and 73. Reese Emert figured into the team's score in the second round and finished 51st after rounds of 81, 79, and 82.

The Tigers shot team totals of 306, 305, and 296 to finish eighth at 907. The 296 was the first sub-300 total they have posted this season. CSU-Pueblo, the 18th-ranked team nationally, won its home tournament with a three-round total of 849, finishing 3-under par as a team. UC-Colorado Springs was second, just 1-over par as a team for the tournament.

Fort Hays State now preps for the MIAA Championships next week (Apr. 19-20) at Shangri-La Country Club in Monkey Island, Oklahoma.