OMAHA, Neb. – The College of Saint Mary softball team suffered two tough losses Thursday afternoon to Hastings College. The Broncos defeated CSM 5-4 in the opener and 6-5 in eight innings in the nightcap.
"These losses hurt," CSM Coach Carolyn Todd Bray said. "We were sitting one spot ahead of them in the conference standings and we couldn't find a way to get the job done.
"The most frustrating part is that we beat ourselves today. We were coming off a 10-day layover with no games and we weren't sharp. We had a lot of mistakes – both mental and physical – and struggled making adjustments at the plate."
On a positive note, Bray said she thought her pitchers had a great day.
"Hastings is one of the best hitting teams in the league and they live on the long ball," Bray said. "Our pitchers did an awesome job of keeping them in check. We just couldn't make the plays behind our pitchers."
Nicki Larsen (JR/Waverly, Neb.), Brittney Banks (SO/Elkhorn, Neb.) and April Sherburne (JR/Clarksville, Iowa) led the Flames in the first game with two hits each. Teammates Emily Dickerson (SR/Council Bluffs, Iowa) and Ashley Trendle (FR/Chicago, Ill.) had one each.
Larsen suffered the loss on the mound for CSM. She tossed 5 1/3 innings before being relieved by Jessica Thurber (JR/Omaha, Neb.) in the sixth. They combined to give up 13 hits, fan two and walk two.
Banks was tagged with the loss in the second game. She pitched a complete game, allowing 12 hits while striking out five and walking one.
Whitney Chamberlain (SO/Peoria, Ariz.) led the Flames offensively. She was 3-for-4 with a solo home run. Teammate Alicia Baca (SO/LaVista, Neb.) also had three hits, while Banks had two hits – including a solo homer – and Trendle added two hits. Larsen and Dickerson each contributed one hit.
"We are a better team than we showed today," Bray said. "We're going to find a way to get back on track. Our athletes will work hard to get better and keep improving."
The Flames face league-leading Morningside College at 1 p.m. Saturday. It will be Senior Day for CSM.