SPRINGFIELD, Ohio—Denison went 1-1 to open the 2017 North Coast Athletic Conference Tournament. After suffering a 4-3 loss to DePauw in the opening game, the Big Red rebounded with a 2-0 win over top-seeded Wittenberg. The win eliminates the Tigers and sets up an 11 a.m. elimination game between Denison and Wooster on Sunday (May 7) in Springfield.
Denison turned to senior hurler Erin Laswell against Wittenberg and all she did was fire a complete game three-hit shutout while striking out nine of 27 batters faced. Laswell was brilliant squaring off against Wittenberg ace Chelsea Zang.
The Tigers got their first base hit in the third and put runners on second and third with two outs. Laswell followed with a strikeout to get out of the jam.
In the fifth, Wittenberg loaded the bases with two outs, but Laswell induced a groundout to Ricki Asher at second to quell another potential rally.
In the seventh, Wittenberg went quietly preserving Denison's season for at least one more day.
Asher led Denison at the plate, going 2-for-3 with a RBI. Laswell improves to 9-4 while Zang drops to 18-3.
In the tournament opener, Denison scored three runs in the fourth to take a 3-1 lead on DePauw. The Tigers responded with two runs in the fourth off RBI singles with the bases loaded, tying the game at 3-3.
In the bottom of the seventh, DePauw led off the inning with a pair of bunt base hits. Lauren Godden put a ball in play and Megan Montgomery came around to score the winning run on a throwing error.
DePauw went on to defeat Wooster in the winner's bracket game. They await the winner of Denison-Wooster. Either Wooster or Denison will have to defeat DePauw, twice to win the tournament championship on Sunday.