DeSario blasts game-winning long ball to down Corpus Christi in tournament finale

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STEPHENVILLE – Amanda DeSario capped off a well-rounded 5-4 team victory with a game-winning home run to lead off the sixth against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi in Sunday’s tournament finale.

Tarleton scratched out a run in each of the first two innings on an RBI fielder’s choice and a bloop double from Amanda DeSario, in which the throw from the outfield sailed away and allowed Tristyn Trull to cross the plate for a 2-0 lead.

The Islanders had an answer in the top of the fourth when a couple of two-out singles set up a bases-clearing, three-run double off the right field wall to put Tarleton behind 3-2.

Tarleton took advantage of Corpus Christi control issues in the bottom of the fourth. Brady Rowland and Katy Schaefer worked two-out walks to load the bases and then Georgia Capell and Ashlee LaRue wore back-to-back pitches to plate a pair of runs and give the Texans the lead right back at 4-3.

After a scoreless fifth from both sides, Corpus Christi led off the sixth with a double and plated her to tie things at 4-4. Reagan Chism came on in relief of starter Hannah Mayo and got a flyout and a double play – turned from first by Rowland, who tagged the base and threw out the runner at third – to end the inning.

Two pitches into the bottom half of the sixth, Amanda DeSario untied it with a mighty swing of the bat. The Texan centerfielder uncorked the team’s 13th home run of the weekend to right center and put Tarleton on top for good.

The Islanders got a one-out single in the seventh, but the rally was cut short by the right arm of catcher Brittany Coe, who threw out Pal Egan at second base before the final out of the game fell into the waiting glove of Capell in left.

Morgan Medford, DeSario and Schaefer each had two hits for the day while Capell and Trull had one each to round out Tarleton’s eight-hit effort.

Mayo got the start against the team from her hometown of Corpus Christi and turned in five innings of work, allowing four runs and striking out four. Chism came on in relief and was flawless with two innings of shutout, no-hit softball to earn the win.

Tarleton will head west next weekend for its last of three tournaments to open the season. The Texans will play five games at the Lobo Classic at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, beginning Friday at 11 a.m. CT against Buffalo.

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