Oxford, AL – The Austin Peay State University (APSU) softball team fell Friday in Day three of the Ohio Valley Conference Championship to Eastern Kentucky, 4-3. The Govs put on a late rally, but came up short. The loss also was the end of the season for APSU.
The Govs (33-22) saw the Colonels (34-19) jump out to a quick 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning and then extent that lead out to four runs, with a three-run fourth inning.
After being held to just three hits over the first five innings, Austin Peay final strung a couple of hits together in the top of the sixth, with Kacy Acree opening the inning with a single – and after stealing second base – scored when EKU’s shortstop committed a throwing error on Bailey Shorter’s infield single.
Shorter would finish the game 3-for-3 at the plate.
A batter later, Carly Mattson would make it a 4-2 game with an infield groundout, scoring Shorter.
The Govs would continue that momentum into the seventh inning, with Lexi Osowski opening the inning with her third home run of the season, to make it a one-run game, 4-3.
Kelsey Gross then followed with a single to right, to put the tying run on base with no outs.
Natalie Schilling would come into pinch runner for Gross and promptly stole second to get into scoring position.
But the Govs rally ended there, as the next three Govs went down in order with Schilling only being able to move up to third base as the last out was recorded.
Morgan Rackel (21-9) took the complete-game loss, giving up nine hits and four runs – two earned – while walking one and striking out four.
The Gov did have a couple of chances to score earlier in the contest, with Shorter getting into scoring position in the first inning – with one out – and Osowski with a one-out double in the second inning, but both were stranded.
The loss also ended the careers of the Govs six seniors on the roster: Danielle Liermann, Kelly Mardones, Acree, Schilling, Rackel and Mattson.
Inside the Boxscore
The Govs seniors ended their careers with 98 total wins, the most of a senior class in program history.
Lexi Osowski set the program’s freshman single-season records for batting average (.387) and slugging percentage (.575).
With her .387 batting average, Lexi Osowski became the eighth freshman in program history to lead the team in batting in a season.
With her four strikeouts, Morgan Rackel finished the season with 242, tying for the third-most in a single season by a Govs pitcher.
Kacy Acree ended the season reaching base in each of her last 14 games.
With her stolen base in the sixth inning, Kacy Acree finished the season 17-for-17 in stolen base attempts, the most stolen bases in a single season without getting thrown out in program history.