CLEARWATER, Fla. – SIUE softball closed out the Under Armour Showcase Sunday morning with a 4-3 victory over South Dakota State, closing out the tournament with its eighth consecutive victory.
The Cougars, 19-4, now return home for its season opener and the SIUE Tournament beginning Friday. SIUE faces Toledo, Ball State and Northern Kentucky on consecutive days of the tournament at Cougar Field.
Emily Ingles, a freshman, went the distance to improve her record to 5-1, including 4-0 on this road trip. She struck out five and allowed five hits to South Dakota State, 12-14.
"She (Ingles) is a gritty kid who loves to compete," said SIUE Head Coach Sandy Montgomery. "She is making quality pitches when she needs to and is getting us out of jams. She threw a lot of good pitches."
The Cougars opened the scoring with two runs only to have South Dakota State take the lead with two runs in the fourth and one more in the fifth.
Eby said she was trying to simply put the ball in play.
"I took the first ball of the at bat high," said Eby. "Then she left the ball over the plate. I hit the ball hard towards the shortstop and it nicked off her glove. If it had gotten completely past her, I may have gotten a double, but I had a single instead and an RBI."
South Dakota State threatened in the top of the seventh. Lyndsey Crist drew a walk and moved to third on a double by Ali Herdliska.
With no outs, Ingles got designated player Brittney Morse to fly out on the infield. Mallory McQuistan then hit a short fly ball to left field that was caught by Paige Clinton. Crist tried to tag up from third and score, but Clinton connected with catcher Amy Hunt for the final out.
"It was a good throw and a good tag and game over," said Montgomery.