The Eagles defeated (RV) San Diego Christian 7-0 in game one and 8-0 in five innings in the second half of the day. Concordia improved to 45-5 and 18-2 in the regular-season, marking the second most wins in the regular season for the program, behind the 51 of 2012.
"It was a great day today as Caitrin Debaun (SR/Garden Grove, CA) and Jenna Jorgenson (SR/Laguna Niguel, CA) led the way in the first inning with two pitched and two runs," Concordia head coach Crystal Rosenthal said. "I am proud of the way we finished the regular season and am looking forward to some rest, and the celebration of Easter and the sacrifice of Christ. Then we will be back at it on Monday."
Stevie Goldstein (JR/Garden Grove, CA), the current GSAC Pitcher of the Week, threw her seventh shutout of the season in game one, allowing seven hits and walking just one. She struck out four and improved to 16-1. Jenna Jorgenson hit her 16th home run of the year and GSAC Player of the Week Hannah Howell (SO/Citrus Heights, CA) hit her 11th. Caitrin Debaun and Jorgenson both had two hits, Emily Craig (SR/Long Beach, CA) drove in two runs, and the Eagles had 10 hits as a team.
Caitrin Debaun singled to open the game and Jorgenson followed by depositing one over the right field fence for the 2-0 lead. Goldstein worked around a leadoff walk in the bottom half and an Eagle error in the second. A hit batter, walk, and hit batter loaded the bases for the Eagles with one out in the third, but they were left stranded. The Eagles infield gunned out two runners in the fourth to help Goldstein work around four Hawks' hits in the inning. Howell hit a solo shot to left field with two out in the sixth to go up 3-0. Rachel Prentice (SR/Upland, CA) led off the seventh with a single and after a sacrifice, Debaun singled her home. Jorgenson and Merjano singled to load the bags, and Emily Craig singled to right field to drive in two. Hattie Marshall (FR/Costa Mesa, CA) singled to right later in the inning for the 7-0 lead. Goldstein worked a strikeout and two groundouts to end the game.
Brittani McGue (JR/Modesto, CA) threw the first four innings of game two and improved to 21-2 on the season. She struck out two and only allowed three hits. Susana Gurney (SO/Cypress, CA) pitched the final inning in order. Jorgenson, Merjano, and Howell all hit doubles, and Merjano led the team with two hits and four RBI.
After two walks to open the game, Merjano swiftly doubled to right center to make it 2-0. Craig hit a sac fly to add one more and a fielder's choice RBI bunt by Kristen Shiotani (SO/Poway, CA) made it 4-0 in the first. A double play ended the threat. The Concordia infield threw out two runners in the bottom half to help McGue strand a hit and hit batter. Craig singled with one out in the third, and pinch-runner Ashley Miller (JR/Torrance, CA) stole a base, and scored on Megan Feuerstein (SO/Huntington Beach, CA)'s single. The Eagles turned a double play to end the third. Jorgenson doubled with two out in the fourth, and Merjano drove in two runs in the inning with a single to left. McGue stranded a leadoff double in the fourth. Shiotani and Lauren Rodriguez (FR/Whittier, CA) singled to drive home the eighth run in the fifth. Gurney induced three straight groundouts to end the game.
The Eagles end their regular season and as GSAC Champions will host the first GSAC Tournament since 2011. The tournament is scheduled at Eagles Field from April 24-26, and Concordia will play their first game at 4:15 pm on Thursday, April 24. Watch all the tournament action at http://client.stretchinternet.com/client/cui.portal#.
With 20 first-place votes and 591 points, Concordia (Calif.) is the No. 1-ranked team for the 15th-straight time in the 2014 NAIA Softball Coaches' Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Tuesday. The Eagles have been on top of all six polls this year and overall dating back to the first regular-season Top 25 on March 19, 2013. The defending national champion now has 21 all-time No. 1 rankings, which is second most all-time since the 2000 season.
The 2014 NAIA Softball National Championship Opening Round hosts -- 10 total -- will be announced by 5 p.m. CDT on Wednesday.
Concordia earned their third-straight Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC) championship after a sweep of then-No. 13 Biola (Calif.) on April 12. With a 43-5 record, the Eagles have now won at least 40 games in each of the last six seasons. Concordia wraps up the regular season with a doubleheader against San Diego Christian (Calif.) on Tuesday.
The 15-straight No. 1 rankings for Concordia (Calif.) is the longest stretch for any program since former member California Baptist rattled through 24-consecutive polls from 2009 – 11. Concordia has now held the No. 1 position in 19 of the last 21 polls overall dating back to the 2012 season. No. 6 William Carey (Miss.) is second with 60-consecutive mentions and Concordia is right behind at 51-straight polls. Since 2000, 11 teams have topped the poll with former member California Baptist leading the way with 46 all-time No. 1 appearances, followed by Concordia with 21.