COLUMBIA, Mo.-Boise State softball scored three runs after a rain delay to earn a 4-3, comeback victory against Northern Illinois Sunday, on the final day of the DeMarini Invitational. Tara Glover scored the game-winning run in the top of the seventh inning. The game was halted after three innings with the Broncos trailing 2-1.
Boise State (15-10) was outhit 6-4, but took advantage of Northern Illinois miscues to scratch out the four runs. Aubray Zell pitched the entire game for the Broncos to pick up her ninth win of the season in the 100th appearance of her career in the circle.
The Broncos jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the second inning when Kelly Sweeney led off the inning and reached on an error. Sweeney took second on the errant throw and Devon Bridges ripped a double to right to bring her around.
The Huskies' first three hits all came with two outs in the bottom of the third inning. Two doubles and a single put them on top 2-1 before the rains came and suspended the game for an hour and 23 minutes.
The Broncos climbed back in front immediately after the delay without the benefit of a base hit. A leadoff walk was followed by a fielder's choice. An unsuccessful fielder's choice put runners at first and second with one away and Megan Harvey was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Jordan Kreiger followed and was also hit by a pitch to drive in the tying run. The Broncos finally got a ball out of the infield when Tazz Weatherly lifted a fly ball to centerfield, deep enough for Mackenzie Whyte to scamper home on the sacrifice fly and give Boise State the lead.
Zell came out of the long break rejuvenated and delivered 1-2-3 innings in the fourth and fifth, but ran into trouble in the sixth. With Boise State still clinging to a 3-2 lead, Northern Illinois' Shelby Miller drove a solo home run to center to tie the game. The Huskies went on to load the bases in the inning, but a Zell fielded a comebacker to get out of the jam and keep the game tied.
Glover stepped to the plate with one down in the seventh riding a mini slump. She singled to snap a 0-for-8 slide, nearly twice as long as any previous such streak during her incredible start to the season. Kellie Caplan followed with a base hit of her own and after the ball was thrown away the Broncos had runners at the corners. After Caplan stole second and eliminated the traditional double play, Holly Bourke chopped a grounder to shortstop and the only play was to first. Glover raced home with the go-ahead run. Caplan was left at third, but the Broncos led 4-3 going to the bottom of the final inning.
A two-out single brought Miller back to the plate, this time as the winning run. Zell was able to keep the ball on the ground and got her to roll one down to first base for the final out of the game.
Boise State starts an 11-game home stand Thursday, against Minnesota in the first game of the SpringHill Suites Invitational #1. Mountain Cove Softball Field is scheduled to play host to 26 games between March 15 and 25, during two tournaments.
Boise State softball has 99 wins in program history...Aubray Zell is the first Bronco pitcher to appear in 100 games in her career...It is the second time this season Boise State won a game while being outhit by its opponent...The game started late due to the inclement weather.