Courtesy of Midland Athletics
CRETE, Neb. – Knowing they needed two wins to clinch the conference title outright, (RV) Midland University went on the road on Tuesday and got what they needed with a sweep of Doane University to close out their regular season. The Warriors jumped out early in both games, cruising to a 15-0 game one win and a 7-3 win in game two. The victories improve their record to 32-7 overall and 19-3 in the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC). Midland has now won or shared a piece of the last four GPAC regular-season championships.
GAME ONE: Midland 15, Doane 0 (5 innings)
The Warriors’ offense was hitting on all cylinders in the 1st as they scored seven runs on seven hits. Kaitlyn Rickey drove in the first runner, Emily Prai, on a one-out infield single. Mia Orduna followed with an RBI single of her own, driving in Roni Foote with a single to right-center. After Aliyah Rincon earned a walk to load the bases, Diana Nisbett broke the game open with a grand slam home run over the left-field wall. After the Tigers recorded the second out, the Warriors drove in one more run as Prai singled home Carly Pfitzer with two outs.
In the 3rd, Midland put another six runs on the board. Brianna Brabec earned the RBI following a hit-by-pitch with the bases loaded. Foote then drove in two runs with a double down the left-field line and Rickey picked up a pair of RBIs with a double to right-center.
The final two runs of the game for the Warriors came in the 4th as Prai hit a triple to the gap in left-center, scoring Amanda Schmaderer who began the inning with a walk. Prai eventually scored on a single by Foote with two outs.
Hailee Fliam allowed just two hits in four complete innings of work. She struck out three batters and walked one. Paeton Coler pitched one inning in relief with one walk while facing five batters.
- Emily Prai: 3-for-3, 3 R, 2 RBI, BB, 3B, SB
- Roni Foote: 3-for-4, 2 R, 3 RBI, 2B
- Kaitlyn Rickey: 2-for-4, 2 R, 3 RBI, 2B
- Mia Orduna: 2-for-4, 1 R, 1 RBI
- Diana Nisbett: 1-for-2, R, 4 RBI, HR
- Carly Pfitzer: 1-for-3, 2 R, 2 SB
GAME TWO: Midland 7, Doane 3
In the second game of the twin bill, the Warriors scored five runs in the first two frames to seize control of the game. In the 1st, Roni Foote got things going with a two-out single. After Kaitlyn Rickey was hit by a pitch, Mia Orduna reached on a throwing error by the pitcher as Foote raced home for the first run of the game. Diana Nisbett followed up with a bases-clearing single to second base to make it 3-0.
An inning later, Aliyah Rincon led off with a single and then scored on a double by Ali Smith. Smith was then brought in as the lineup turned over, and Emily Prai ripped a double to left-center.
With the game in hand, Midland cruised through the middle innings, allowing their first run of the day in the 6th as Doane took advantage of a few miscues. The leadoff hitter reached on a wild pitch on strike three and then was moved around the bases with a single and a fielders’ choice. With one out and runners on the corners, the runner on first took off for second on the pitch. Midland threw down to thwart the steal of second, chasing the runner back to first. Meanwhile, the runner on third darted home for the Tigers’ first run of the game.
In the final inning, The Warriors got two runs on two hits. Prai led off with a single to center and then Brianna Brabec doubled down the left-field line. Foote drove in Prai with a groundout to short and then Rickey hit a sacrifice fly to left, scoring Brabec. The Tigers scored a pair in their half of the 7th, making the final score 7-3.
Aliyah Rincon, the GPAC Pitcher of the Week, scattered eight hits while allowing three earned runs. She struck out seven batters in seven innings of work.
- Emily Prai: 2-for-4, R, RBI, 2B, SB
- Diana Nisbett: 2-for-2, 2 RBI
- Ali Smith, 2-for-3, R, RBI, 2B
Midland (32-7, 19-3 GPAC) will now await the completion of the conference games this week and the pairings for the GPAC Postseason Tournament. As the regular-season champion and number-one seed, the Warriors will host a four-team pod next week in a double-elimination half of the championship tournament next Wednesday and Thursday, May 4-5, in Fremont. The other host site is still up for grabs as Mount Marty (14-4), Northwestern (12-6), and Morningside (13-7) are all in contention for second place. The GPAC will release the postseason pairings once the regular season is complete on Saturday.