|Softball » 2007 State Farm MVC Softball Championship||News | Schedule | Statistics | Championship|
A three-run first inning was more than enough for Creighton pitcher Tara Oltman, as the freshman hurler went the distance leading the top-seeded Bluejays to the 2007 Missouri Valley Conference Championship with the 6-2 victory over third-seeded Southern Illinois Saturday in Normal, Ill.
The championship for the Bluejays was the fifth all-time in the program's history and the fourth in the past five seasons.
Creighton received stand out performances from Oltman, who struck out eight on her way to recording her 25th win of the season, and catcher TJ Eadus, who went 3-for-4 with a home run and 4 RBI.
The Bluejays' overall record improves to 39-12-1 and they receive the MVC champion's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Salukis' season mark stands at 40-14 and now must wait and see if they earn an at-large bid to the NCAA's postseason tournament.
Creighton wasted little time getting on the board against SIU's All-Conference pitcher Cassidy Scoggins, as the `Jays scored three runs in the top of first. Shortstop Bailey Dawson singled sharply to right driving in the game's leadoff batter Jamie Reiss. Reiss started the game off with an opposite-field single to left and advance to second when center fielder Jessica Wakasugi walked. Both Dawson and Wakasugi advanced an extra base when SIU right fielder Katie Wilson tried to throw Reiss out at the plate. The extra bases proved costly, as Wakasugi scored on a fielder's choice RBI off the bat of catcher TJ Eadus and Dawson crossed home on a RBI ground out by Caitlin Marcano.
The Salukis pushed across their first run of the game on a blast to straight away center field off the bat of
Creighton recorded two insurance runs in the top of the fifth inning as Eadus raked a two-run shot over the 210-foot sign in center field, her 16th blast of the season, off of SIU reliever Ashley Hamby.
Ashley Birdsong, Bradley
Jamie Reiss, Creighton
Bailey Dawson, Creighton
Tara Oltman, Creighton
T.J. Eadus, Creighton MVP
The final is set at the 2007 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Softball Championship as the top-seeded Creighton Bluejays will face No. 3 Southern Illinois in Saturday’s finale at 1:30 p.m. for an automatic berth into the NCAA Division I Softball Championship.
Creighton was a 3-1 winner in the first semifinal, dropping
The Bluejays jumped out early in the first inning on a two-out, two-run homerun by all-Valley catcher T.J. Eadus, her 15th of the season, off of Shocker starter Margo Pruis.
Creighton would add another run on a solo shot by shortstop Bailey Dawson in the bottom half of the third to stake CU to the tournament’s largest lead.
In game two, Southern Illinois became just the second team to shut out the powerful
The Salukis would get to Redbird starter and all-MVC performer Shannon Nicholson in the third, scrapping across an unearned run to lead, 1-0.
SIU would tack on two more, one each in the fourth and fifth, scoring in the fourth after a Katie Wilson one-out double followed by a Katie Wagner RBI single and in the fifth, playing small ball after a leadoff single from Tiffanie Dismore, a sacrifice bunt, a pair of walks and a sacrifice fly.
Creighton leads the all-time series in the MVC Tournament, five games to three and defeated Southern Illinois, 5-0, in the championship game in 2004.
First and Second Rounds
The action was fast and furious on the first day of the 2007 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Softball Championship at the Redbird Softball Complex in
No. 8 Indiana State was the day’s first winner, claiming an eight-inning affair over the No. 5 seed Evansville Purple Aces, 3-2. Game two was more high-tension action in another one-run contest as No. 7 Bradley became the second lower-seeded team to pull off the first-round upset, using a fifth inning homerun as the difference in a 2-1 win over No. 6 Missouri State.
No. 4 Wichita State and
The nightcap produced the fourth one-run contest and showcased some outstanding pitching as No. 3 Southern Illinois topped Bradley, 1-0, behind Cassidy Scoggins’ one-hitter.
The 2007 Championship joins the 1997 and 1986 MVC Softball Championships as the only tournaments in which the first four games have been decided by one run. In 1986, the first six games were one-run decisions.
Tomorrow’s semifinals will pit the top-seeded Creighton Bluejays against the Shockers of Wichita State at noon and No. 2 Illinois State against No. 3 Southern Illinois at approximately 2:30 p.m.
This year, the State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Softball Championship will use an eight-team, single-elimination format with the top-two seeds earning double-byes into the tournament semifinals. Seeds No. 3 and 4 earn a bye into the tournament's second round and await the winners of the two opening round games.
This page, along with Championship Central will be updated throughout the tournament. Follow the links at the top of the page, or below, to experience the 2007 State Farm MVC Softball Championship through live video, audio and fan blogging.
Thursday, May 10 - Day One Recaps, Box Scores, Notes and Quotes
Game 2 No. 7 Bradley def. No. 6 Missouri State, 2-1 ● Gametracker ● Championship Central
Game 4 No. 3 Southern Illinois def. No. 7 Bradley, 1-0 ● Gametracker ● Championship Central _________________________________________________________________________________________
Friday, May 11
Saturday, May 12
Game 7 No. 1 Creighton def. No. 3 Southern Illinois, 6-2
Live Broadcast on Fox College Sports, Comcast SportsNet and Metro Sports - Tape Delay on FSN Midwest (5:30 p.m.)