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Miami Softball wins first game against Toledo in the 2024 MAC tournament

A home run from Spaid in the bottom of the seventh tied the game at 4-4.
A home run from Spaid in the bottom of the seventh tied the game at 4-4.

The No. 1 Miami University RedHawks softball team defeated the No. 5 University of Toledo Rockets in the first game of the 2024 Mid-American Conference (MAC) tournament 5-4. 

First-year infielder Sami Bewick led Miami with two runs, and senior infielder Karli Spaid, junior outfielder Jenna Golembiewski and graduate student infielder Holly Blaska each contributed one. 

Four Rockets scored, with one run each from junior shortstop Eli Enriquez, first-year outfielder Reis Sjoholm, junior infielder Kendra Vander Lugt and graduate student third baseman Emily Bracamonte. 

The game started slow for both teams with a scoreless first inning. However, two runs from Toledo in the second inning  gave the Rockets a lead that they held for a majority of the game. An extended rain delay kept both teams off the field for over four hours before they entered the fourth inning.

The Rockets took another two runs to extend their lead to 4-0. The RedHawks brought in one run in the bottom of the fourth, but that’s all they could muster for the time. 

After another rain delay, this time for one hour, the game resumed with Miami closing the gap in the fifth inning. A two-run homer from Bewick allowed her and Blaska to score and bring them within one point of the Rockets, 4-3. 

First-year pitcher Madilyn Reeves threw all seven innings and ended the night with an earned run average (ERA) of 3.17 and four strikeouts. Going into the tournament, head coach Kirin Kumar knew that the key to their success was relying on the pitchers to keep them in the game. 

Reeves’ pitching and the RedHawks’ defense kept the score unchanged through the sixth inning and the top of the seventh. A home run from Spaid in the bottom of the seventh tied the game at 4-4. Bewick finished the game with a hit that brought Golembiewski home from third and gave Miami its first win of the tournament. 

The RedHawks next face the No. 2 Ohio University Bobcats today at 1 p.m. The Bobcats defeated the No. 6 Ball State University Cardinals 8-0. Senior outfielder Yasmine Logan and junior infielder Emma Hoffner contributed two runs. 

Miami last met the Bobcats in a three game series in late March, where the RedHawks swept them 3-0. Game two of that series saw both teams engage in a high-scoring shootout ending with a Miami victory 16-13. The RedHawks scored 10 runs in the first inning of that game, and five players scored more than one run by the end. 

The game starts at 1 p.m. at Firestone Stadium in Akron, Ohio. Neither team has a loss yet in the tournament, so the stakes are high for the top two seeds in the conference. 


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