Wednesday, May 8, 2002

 

SMU baseball to MIAC

The Saint Mary's University baseball team did its part - albeit the hard way - with a regular season-ending sweep of Augsburg last Wednesday. Then, the Cardinals had to take a wait-and-see approach to the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference playoffs as the rest of the conference field finished its schedule on Saturday.
And thanks to a St. Thomas-Concordia split and a Macalester sweep of Bethel, the wait was worth it - well worth it.
The Cardinals did their part to earn a spot in the four-team MIAC post-season tournament by rallying for an eight-inning 10-9 win in Game 1 against the Auggies, then scored the game-winning run on a bases-loaded balk with two out in the bottom of the seventh inning of the nightcap for a 3-2 win.
With a 13-7 conference record, the Cardinals were still battling Gustavus and Concordia for the remaining two playoff spots heading into Saturday's games. Gustavus laid claim to the third spot in the league with a sweep of its doubleheader against Augsburg, leaving the Cardinals and Cobbers in a dogfight for the final slot.
The Cobbers earned a split with the defending NCAA Division III national champion Tommies, but it turned out to be a hollow victory, as Macalester's sweep of Bethel officially eliminated the Cobbers - and officially earned SMU the conference's final tournament invitation.
The Cardinals are making their second straight appearance in the MIAC post-season tournament.
SMU's pitching staff is led by Eric Williamson (St. Charles, Minn.), Cory Kanz (Oronoco, Minn.) and Andy Ebert (Winona, Minn.). Williamson sports a team-leading 2.38 ERA and 4-2 record. Kanz, meanwhile, is 4-3 with a 3.92 ERA and leads the team in innings pitched (43.2) and complete games (5), while Ebert (6.21 ERA) is the team-leader in wins (5) and strikeouts (41). Chuck Wright (Winona, Minn.) has registered three of SMU's five saves.


Girls fastpitch has openings

There are still openings for the Sparklers fastpitch program this summer. The program will run from June 10 to July 12 on Monday and Wednesday evenings. This program was designed by the Board of the Winstars traveling fastpitch teams of Winona for girls in grades 1 through 5 to learn the basics of fastpitch softball. If interested, please contact Lori O'Brien at 689-4413 for more information.


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