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Lauren Rakes
Lauren Rakes got the complete game win in the circle and also hit the game winning RBI.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

Lenoir-Rhyne Softball Opens Championship With Win

The No. 8 seed Lenoir-Rhyne upsets the No. 1 seed Auburn Montgomery 1-0 in an extra inning thriller to open the NCAA DII Softball Championship. Lauren Rakes allowed just four hits in the complete game shutout while Rakes also drove in the game’s only run with a RBI single in the 9th inning. The Bears will play No. 4 seed Indianapolis tomorrow morning with the winner advancing to the bracket final. The win was the Bears fifth victory in extra innings this postseason.

The game was scoreless through seven innings as no one even got a runner to third until the 9th inning. Lani Warren got the game’s only extra base hit to lead off the top of the 9th as Warren doubles off the left field wall. Cassidy Wall then had a bunt single before Rakes singled to center field to score pitch running Kaylee Chapman. Rakes then set the Warhawks down 1-2-3 in the 9th inning to give the Bears their first ever World Series victory. Rakes stuck out five while walking two and allowing just four singles. 24 of the 54 putouts where fly outs or pop outs as their were just 12 hits in the game.

The Bears had eight singles and no one had more then one hit in the game. LR only had the lead-off man on in the 1st and 9th inning. Warren threw out a running trying to steal in the 8th inning to end the threat.

This was the first ever World Series game for Lenoir-Rhyne. LR is now 8-2 in extra inning this season. Bears are also 5-1 in extra innings this postseason.

Julia Mardigian got her 102nd hit of the season and is one hit off from the national lead.

For the second time in her career, Rakes threw a complete game shutout and drove in the game’s only run. The first time was against No. 16 North Georgia in 2020.

The Bears will take on the No. 4 seeded University of Indy at 11:00 AM Monday.

{Information provided by Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics}