PORT ARTHUR, Texas — In a hard-fought contest between Blinn College softball and No. 5 Tyler Junior College, the Apaches managed to come out on top, 5-3, in the second round of the NJCAA Region XIV Softball Tournament on Saturday.
With the loss, the Buccaneers fall to 31-17 overall. Next, the Buccaneers will play San Jacinto College-South on Sunday, May 6, at 10 a.m. in a must-win game.
Meghan Morris was solid in the circle for Blinn after throwing a complete game. She surrendered five runs on 10 hits, while striking out five.
Defense from both sides was strong throughout the game as neither pitcher allowed a run until the fourth inning. Tyler made the first impression on the board with one run in the fourth.
In the fifth inning, Alvarez-Lopez erased Tyler's lead with one swing of the bat after hitting a solo shot to tie the game.
The Apaches took back the lead for good after breaking away in the sixth inning with three runs for a 4-1 advantage.
Alivia Villarreal drove in a run for Blinn in the bottom half of the sixth inning with a single for Gray to score and the Buccaneers to trail 4-2.
In the seventh inning, Tyler added one run to build its lead to 5-2.
The Buccaneers fought back in the seventh inning for one run after Gomez hit a triple and scored on an error. However, the Buccaneers' rally attempt was cut short as they fell to Tyler, 5-3.
Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 36 NJCAA national championships since 1987.