Softball: Drovers Win First Ever National Championship

The USAO Drovers (#4) edged out the Columbia College Cougars (#4), by the score of 4-1. The Cougars would strike first, as they would score on a RBI single from Rachel Sullivan that would score Natalie Dummitt. The Drovers would respond with a 4 run bottom of the 3rd, where Chloe Clifton would score on a wild pitch and Shania Beck would hit a 3 run home run to score Alyson Clemence and Randa Hatter.

With this win, the Drovers will the first softball national championship, and finish the season with a 57-5 record on the season. The Drovers finish the season with a very impressive 12-1 record during the postseason, with the only loss coming against Oklahoma City during the conference tournament. After this loss, the Cougars will finish the season with a 37-16 record, and will finish as the NAIA world series runner-ups.

The Drovers offense put together 5 hits, and were led by Shania Beck. She would go 2-2 with a single and a 3 run home run. Emily Cerny went 2-2 with 2 singles. Darci Chester went 1-3 with a single.

The Drovers sent the FR. pitcher Emily Cerny, as she would fire a complete game, throwing 7 innings and she allowed 1 run on 5 hits. Cerny would also throw 4 strikeouts, but she would allow 5 walks on the afternoon. With this win, Cerny moves to 33-4 on the season, as she complete one of the most memorable Freshman season at USAO. Along with her perfomances, Cerny was awared the MVP of the tournament, as she claim the wins in all of the world series games.

The Cougars offense would collect 5 hits, as they would be led Rachel Sullivan. She would go 3-4 with 3 singles. Natalie Dummitt went 1-2 with a triple. Olivia Denslow went 1-3 with a double.

The Cougars sent Molly Carter to the mound, where she would go 2.2 innings and would allow 4 unearned runs on 3 hits. With this loss, now she will fall to 7-4 on the season. The reliever for the Cougars was, Lexi Dickerson. She would throw 3.1 inning, as she would allow 0 runs and give up just 2 hits.

Freshman Kindle Nelms said “Winning the National championship means so much to me and my team! We have worked so hard for this moment. I am so proud of everyone!”

Freshman Darci Chester said “All I can say is it is just a indescribable feeling! We knew all year that we could be something great and we proved it today!”

Senior Shania Beck Said “Today was a huge day for me. Win or loose It marked the end of my career. I’m so glad I got to play my last game as a college softball player with the teammates I had this year. I couldn’t have dreamed of a better way to end my career.”

Junior Dakota Clouse said “Catching that last ball and seeing my team come sprinting onto the field and into a dog pile was everything I ever imagined. It brought tears to my eyes knowing that all the hard work we’ve done this season paid off. These girls are my family and I couldn’t be more proud of them, I love this team with my whole heart. I can’t wait to come back next year and make more memories with my girls!”

Picture taken by P.J. Garcia

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