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MSU softball losses another tough game

April 19, 2015

It was another tough luck loss for the softball team on Sunday afternoon.

Minnesota (37-7 overall, 12-3 Big Ten) completed its sweep of MSU (16-29 overall, 1-15 Big Ten) at Secchia Stadium, defeating the Spartans, 9-4.

“We were in the game,” head coach Jacquie Joseph said. “Give credit to Minnesota, they found a way to pull out a win, that’s what great teams do.”

It was the 12th straight loss for the Spartans.

Minnesota defeated MSU, 8-4 on Friday afternoon behind a late rally, where they scored five runs in the seventh inning. Two errors in the fourth inning cost the Spartans on Saturday afternoon en route to a 7-1 loss.

“We had a chance to beat them in two of the three games,” Joseph said. “They’re top 13 in the country, it just shows we’re not that far off.”

Minnesota took advantage of an early MSU error in the first inning on Sunday to score their first run. Freshman pitcher Bridgette Rainey hit consecutive batters in the second inning, which would lead to two more Minnesota runs.

Rainey pitched in all seven innings, allowing eight earned runs and walking four on twelve hits.

“Another example of why we’re so excited about (Bridgette),” Joseph said. “I left her in there (in the seventh inning) because she’s got to learn to finish.”

MSU faced off against Minnesota’s sophomore starting pitcher Sara Groenewegen for the second time in three days on Sunday. Coming into Sunday’s game, Groenewegen had a 21-4 record with a 1.68 ERA and just last week threw a no-hitter against Northwestern.

Like they did on Friday, the Spartans scored three runs off Groenewegen in the third inning.

Freshman centerfielder Lea Foerster doubled to right center to score a run and senior catcher Ellie Stoffer doubled to left center to score a pair.

It was a team leading twelfth double for Foerster. who had six hits and two RBIs on the weekend. The Spartans took the lead in the fifth inning after Stoffer doubled to left field but the advantage would be short lived.

“I thought I competed well,” Stoffer said after her two hit, three RBI game.

Minnesota came right back in the subsequent innings, posting six runs on five hits in the sixth and seventh innings. The late outburst would be enough to defeat the Spartans.

“Even though we couldn’t finish it out, knowing we’re that close is something positive to take away,” Stoffer said.

MSU will travel to Ann Arbor on Tuesday to take on Michigan at 7 p.m.

Michigan defeated MSU last Wednesday, 10-0. The game was called after five innings due to the five run rule.


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