The Gustavus softball team advanced to the MIAC Playoff title game Saturday afternoon with a 7-1 victory over Saint Mary’s in Shoreview, Minn., improving to 32-9 on the year. Saint Mary’s ends its season with an 18-21 record. The Gusties will now face St. Thomas in the championship game at 1:00 p.m. The Tommies defeated the Gusties 9-0 Friday.
Gustavus took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on a lead-off home run by Lisa Klass, her fourth of the season. After two scoreless innings, the Gusties tacked on three more runs for a 4-0 advantage in the fourth. Sarah Rozell and Breanne Rentschler hit consecutive singles to start the frame and each advanced a bag on a sacrifice bunt by Mackenzie Dalton. Shelby Nosan and Carly Klass ensued with back-to-back RBI singles. Lisa Klass was then hit by a pitch, which forced the Cardinals to make a pitching change. The inning ended after Kailey Morgan was hit by a pitch with the bases full, giving the Gusties a four-run lead.
One more run was scored by Gustavus in the fifth and two in the sixth for a 7-0 lead before Saint Mary’s ended the shutout in the seventh inning with its lone run of the game.
Rozell picked up the win after four innings of work. She gave up three hits and struck out two. Rentschler earned the save after tossing the final three frames. She allowed one run on two hits and tallied one strikeout.
Leading the way at the plate for the Gusties were Lisa Klass and Sam Breneman. They each tallied three hits in as many at-bats. Klass scored twice and picked up two RBI, while Breneman scored and drove in a run as well.