The North Central Missouri College Lady Pirate offense was held to just four hits in a 7-5 loss to Maple Woods on Friday morning, in the opening round of the double-elimination Region 16 softball tournament in Joplin.
For the victorious Monarchs, Hillary Protzman had the game-winning RBI’s in the top of the sixth inning, while Karen Jaggars got the win in relief, and Hannah Hirschvogel had a home run. The win sends Maple Woods into a winners bracket semifinal with top-seeded Three Rivers this (Friday) afternoon at 3:45. Three Rivers had a first-round bye.
The loss by North Central will put the Lady Pirates in a “do-or-die” elimination game on Saturday morning at 11:15, against a team to be determined. As of 1:30 on Friday afternoon, the #3 seeded Crowder Lady ‘Riders beat State Fair in a first-round game, 9-1, with Jefferson and St. Charles ready to start at 1:30. Potential opponents for NCMC in Saturday morning’s loser’s bracket semifinal are Crowder, Jefferson College, or St. Charles.
In order to rally into the championship round, North Central will need to win at 11:15 on Saturday morning, 6 o’clock on Saturday night, and 8:15 on Saturday night. In that scenario, NCMC would play the winner’s bracket champion, needing to win twice (Sunday at 12 noon and 2 o’clock) in order to win the NJCAA, Division 1, Region 16 softball title.
On Thursday night, NCMC had four players receive All-Region 16 honors. Kendra Holt and Makayla Lamphier were named second-team All-Region selections for the Lady Pirates, with Alex Miller and Kaitlyn Marsh named to the first-team.