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Feb. 15, 2013
TEMPE, ARIZ. - Minnesota took a 1-0 lead into the sixth inning, but Illinois State rallied for three runs in the top of that decisive inning to defeat Minnesota, 3-1, in the teams' second meeting of the day at Arizona State's Littlewood Classic.
The win by the Redbirds (4-3) spoiled what had been a solid outing for Minnesota junior pitcher Sara Moulton. The right-hander had allowed just one hit with six strikeouts through the first five innings, but Illinois State was able to get to Moulton in the sixth.
After recording an out to start the sixth, Moulton (1-4) walked a batter, followed by an infield single and a single up the middle to score a run and tie the game. Another infield single loaded the bases, and Moulton was replaced by sophomore right-hander Kelsey Kimminau.
In the first game of the day, a 5-1 win for Illinois State, Kimminau had pitched 2.2 hitless innings for the Gophers. But the outcome was different this evening, as the Redbirds struck quickly, with Brittny Drish's double to left driving in a pair of runs to give ISU its 3-1 lead.
Minnesota had taken its 1-0 lead on a solo home run to right-center by sophomore second baseman Erika Smyth to lead off the bottom of the fourth inning. It was Smyth's first home run of the season, and the sixth for Minnesota.
In addition to Smyth, sophomore shortstop Tyler Walker went 2-for-4 with a double. But the Gophers were limited to six hits by ISU freshman pitcher Regan Romshek (2-2), who struck out a career-best 12 batters in the complete-game win.
The Gophers face another Missouri Valley Conference opponent, Northern Iowa, for a pair of games on Saturday. First pitch in the opening game with the Panthers is set for 1:45 p.m. CT. The second game will begin at 8:30 p.m. CT. On Sunday, Minnesota will wrap up the tournament by taking on No. 3/3 Arizona State at 2:15 p.m. CT.
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