Blossoms rally to stay perfect, win Super 8 Classic

The University of Arkansas at Monticello softball team defeated Drury 10-2 in five innings, followed by a come-from-behind 4-3 win over Southern Indiana on the final day of the 2009 Super 8 Softball Classic held over the weekend at the Monticello Sports Complex.

With the wins, the Blossoms improve to 12-0, marking the best start to a season in the program’s history. The 1999 Blossoms won 10 consecutive games to open the season before recording their first loss.

In the win over Drury, the Blossoms used an explosive six-run second inning, all with two outs, en route to the run-rule victory. Freshman Amanda Nordberg reached on a walk, followed by back-to-back singles from senior Amy Mardis and freshman Meagan Wilson. Wilson’s single scored Nordberg for the first run of the inning.

Senior Lindsey Randall followed with an RBI-double down the left field line to score Mardis. Freshman Katie Bowman kept the rally alive with a two-RBI single to right field, scoring Wilson and Randall. Two batters later, junior Becca Tipton capped the scoring with a two-RBI double to left center field, plating Bowman and freshman Kayla Jackson, who reached on an error.

The Blossoms scored three more runs in the third inning, highlighted by a two-RBI double from Jackson, scoring Wilson and Randall. Wilson was hit by a pitch, while Randall reached on an error.

Jackson recorded her sixth win of the season in a complete-game effort, only allowing two runs off two hits. Neither of her runs allowed were earned, and she also held a no-hitter entering the top of the fifth inning.

In the win over Southern Indiana, the Blossoms used a four-run seventh inning to record the second victory over Southern Indiana in the classic.

Randall started a rally of four consecutive base hits with a single down the right field line, followed by Bowman’s single to left field, Jackson’s single to center, and Tipton’s two-RBI single to right field, scoring Randall and Bowman.

Junior Emilie Hobbs and senior Becca Sustaire followed with back-to-back walks to load the bases with only one out. Nordberg struck out looking, setting up junior Kayla Temple for the game-winning walk, scoring Tipton.

Nordberg moved to 3-0 this season with the complete-game win, allowing three runs (one earned) off only two hits.

UAM continues play this weekend in the Bentonville Softball Classic for games against East Central Oklahoma and Missouri Southern State. The team opens play with a double header against East Central on Friday, February 20, starting at 1 p.m.

<p>UAM's Katie Bowman takes off after a hit in the Super 8 Softball Classic, which the host Cotton Blossoms won with a perfect record.</p>


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