COLORADO SPRINGS – A three-run first inning and four-run third propelled NFCA No. 12 Colorado School of Mines softball to a 7-3 win Sunday morning and a weekend sweep of UC-Colorado Springs at Mountain Lion Field.
For the second straight game, the Orediggers (35-5-1, 26-3 RMAC) jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first frame as senior Macy Jones and junior Gianna Duncan reached on infield singles; junior Sami Springer followed with an opposite field, RBI-double and sophomore Cassie Ford lifted a one-out, two-run double to the gap in right center.
Springer opened the top of the third with a first-pitch single to right and upon taking second with her 12th stolen base – 10th-most in the RMAC – came home on a base hit to right center by junior Melissa Marshall. Senior Molly Thiebaut doubled the first pitch of her at-bat to left center and junior Courtney Derus then emptied the bases with a one-out, three-run home run to right center, her third homer in two days against UCCS.
The Mountain Lions (23-18-1, 18-14 RMAC) plated one run in the third, fifth and sixth inning for the ending margin.
Derus, the team-leader with 13 multi-RBI games, including seven with three RBI or more, finished 1-for-3 with one run. The Broomfield, Colo. native ranks fifth in the RMAC with 39 RBI and seventh with nine home runs, both team-highs.
Springer was 2-for-4 with one RBI and two runs, her team-leading 14th multi-hit outing and third in the last five games.
Jones went 2-for-4 with one run; Marshall was 2-for-3 with one RBI and a run scored and Ford closed the game 1-for-3 with two RBI. Ford leads Mines and sits 11th in the conference with 11 two-baggers.
Senior Ashley Goletz bumped her record to 14-4 in the circle, tied for fourth-most wins in the RMAC, going 5.0 innings and scattering two earned runs on seven hits with one strikeout. Classmate Kelly Unkrich worked 2.0 innings of one-hit ball in relief for her conference-leading fourth save and 11th of her career.
With the win, third-year head coach Kristie Hawkins became the third softball skipper in Mines history to reach the 100-win plateau with a career record of 100-53-1. Already third on the program's win list, Hawkins boasts a career winning percentage of 65.3, including an impressive 80-28 (74.1 percent) mark in conference games. The 2011 RMAC Coach of the Year has directed CSM to three consecutive RMAC regular season titles for the first time, a berth in the NCAA Division II Softball Championships and a program-high ranking of No. 9 in the NFCA Top-25 poll earlier this season.