Mountain Lions Eliminated from RMAC Tournament
GOLDEN, Colo. - Sara Jordan had two home runs, five RBIs and pitched a five-inning shutout as the Mesa State Mavericks beat the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs 8-0 Thursday afternoon, eliminating the Mountain Lions from the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Tournament and ending their season.
Jordan's second home run, a three-run shot in the bottom of the fifth inning, was a walk-off of sorts. It gave the Mavericks an eight-run lead and brought the game to an end by way of the NCAA's run rule.
Jordan (15-12) also pitched for Mesa State and held UCCS to three hits, singles by Marissa Wallace, Landry Davis and Lara Mathewson.
It was the final career game for UCCS' lone senior, Amanda Hathaway. She leaves as the Mountain Lions' No. 9 all-time home run hitter and with one remarkable school record - 21 outfield assists in 2010. Hathaway was tearful after the game.
"It's been absolutely amazing and it has gone so fast," she said. "There're no words to describe how much it sucks that it's over. I just wish I had one more year."
So does UCCS coach Scott Peterson, who will miss his center fielder and team captain. Peterson, though, was proud of the resilience his team showed in overcoming a poor start to climb all the way back into a playoff berth.
"The way we fought to get into this thing; we were in 12th, 11th, 10th - we were sitting in ninth for what seemed like three weeks," said Peterson. "The fact that we got here was great."
But while getting to the postseason was an accomplishment for a team that hadn't been there since 2007, it will never be Peterson's goal. He expects his teams to be among the best and believes that's where this core group of Mountain Lions is headed.
"I think this showed what we need to do to get to that next level," he said. "We need to stay healthy, hit a little better and get more depth."
He's well on his way to the depth part of the puzzle. He's working on what could be an impact recruiting class to add to a strong base.
But that's in the future. On Thursday, he told his players not to hang their heads. There were some brave faces, but also some tears of disappointment.
"Two teams were going home today," said Peterson, referring to the tournament's double-elimination format. "We wish we could have made it to Friday, but we didn't."
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
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