5-10-18 Weber State vs Northern Colorado (Sara Parker) (8 of 37).JPG
5/10/18 Weber State vs Northern Colorado competing in Big Sky Championships (Sara Parker / The Signpost)

The Weber State University softball team entered the final stages of its season as they participated in the Big Sky Conference Tournament for the fourth consecutive year. The Wildcats played their first postseason game on May 10 against sixth-seeded University of Northern Colorado Bears and fell short by a score of 6–3 at the Wildcat Softball Field in Ogden.

The Bears finished the season 26–25, with a conference record of 8–9. Earlier in the day, the Bears defeated North Dakota 7–4 in a play-in game and punched their ticket to face the Wildcats.

5-10-18 Weber State vs Northern Colorado (Sara Parker) (12 of 37).JPG
Molly Horne catching teammates ball. (Sara Parker / The Signpost)

Takesha Saltern picked up the first hit of the day for the ‘Cats, and Ashlyn Visser was able to send her home with a sacrifice fly early in the first inning. Ali Belloc would help increase their lead with an RBI single that brought Landi Hawker home, giving WSU a 2–0 lead after the first.

The Bears would respond in the second inning. Sophomore second baseman Sophia Taylor drove in two runs with a single into left field, tying the game at 2.

First Team All-Big Sky pitcher Kirtlyn Bohling started game one of the tournament. Bohling struggled to hit the mark early on and only pitched two innings, allowing two runs and walking four.

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#3 Payton Hergert hitting for the wildcats. (Sara Parker / The Signpost)

The Wildcats sent in junior pitcher Tatiana Su’esu’e in relief of Bohling in the third inning. She struck out the first batter, but then allowed a two-run home run to Rachel Johnson. The Bears took a 4–2 lead heading into the bottom of the third and did not look back.

Northern Colorado pitcher Valeri Vidal (2nd Team All-Big Sky) started for the Bears and pitched a complete game. Vidal surrendered two runs in the first inning, but allowed only one run the rest of the way, a solo shot in the bottom of the fourth by WSU senior Rae Gall.

Senior Bear Kaley Garcia quickly earned that run back with a line drive home run to left leading off the fifth, giving the Bears a 5–3 lead. Madi Young scored on an error later in the inning leading to the final score of 6–3.

Weber State head coach Mary Kay Amicone said it came down to the teams fight and execution. She was also impressed by the resilience of Northern Colorado.

“They got some nerves out by playing earlier in the day. They hit well in that game, so they were confident coming in,” Amicone said. “Whatever seed you are, everybody from top to bottom can beat somebody, and if you’re wearing purple, you are going to have a target on your back. So you’ve got to play with that fight and determination.”

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