By Kaleb Center CSC Sports Information Director
The homestanding Colorado State University-Pueblo ThunderWolves salvaged a 2-2 tie in a Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference series with Chadron State College, winning 7-5 and 12-11 on Saturday in Pueblo.
Chadron State, the home team for the series since it was scheduled for Chadron and moved to Colorado because of the weather, fell to 3-15 (3-5 RMAC), while Pueblo improved to 8-3 (5-3 RMAC).
The ThunderWolves survived on 13 unearned runs, which came mostly at inopportune times for the Eagles, who plated 10 unearned runs of their own including 9 in the nightcap.
In the morning game, all of Pueblo’s seven runs came as a result of CSC errors. The teams were tied 3-3 after four innings, but in both the fifth and sixth, errors by the Eagles occurred with one out and one on base, turning into two runs in both innings.
Down 7-4 after six, the Eagles recovered one run in the seventh on an RBI single by Jessie Henchenski.
Each team had a big inning in the afternoon game, resulting in wild momentum swings.
The Eagles’ turn came first, as they grabbed an 8-2 lead in the fourth. Leading off, first baseman Allie Mason reached on an error before J’Lyssa Martinez, pinch running for Mason, came home on a single by second baseman Amaya Ruiz. Three more runs scored on a base-clearing single by pinch-hitter Paige Edwards, and two free bases with bags loaded accounted for the other two runs in a six-run inning for CSC.
The ThunderWolves countered in the top of the seventh. A CSC error with two outs cascaded into a six-hit, two-error, one-walk affair which put Pueblo up 11-8.
CSC used an error by Pueblo in the bottom of the seventh to put three back on the board and send the game to extra innings. Lauren Zimmerman, pinch-hitting, had an RBI single, and third baseman Sloane Quijas tacked on the tying run with a two-RBI shot.
In the eighth, yet another unearned run for Pueblo represented the game winner, when Katelynn Ralston walked, advanced on an error, and tagged up on a popup to score.
CSUP’s Sophia Lishner improved to 2-2 by pitching the final four and one-third innings. Gabby Russell fell to 1-2 for CSC after entering for the final out in the top of the seventh inning.
Chadron State hopes to host a true home opener against Colorado Christian on Saturday and Sunday.