Southeast Missouri State kept its slim hopes of reaching the Ohio Valley Conference softball tournament alive Wednesday with a 5-2 home win over Eastern Illinois.
The Redhawks found themselves in ninth place in the 10-team league heading into Wednesday's game. Southeast improved to 9-15 in the OVC with the win and moved ahead of Eastern Illinois into eighth and two games behind sixth-place Tennessee-Martin in the win column. The top six teams qualify for the tournament.
Eastern Illinois led 2-0 after three innings, but the Redhawks grabbed the lead for good with a three-run fourth. Southeast scored two more in the sixth to seal the win.
Elaine Fisher allowed two runs on eight hits with five strikeouts and just one walk to collect the complete-game victory. Fisher improved to 13-19.
Offensively, Michelle Summers had the big blow with a three-run home run. It was the 12th home run of the season for Summers, which tied the school record set this season by freshman Stacia Dopudja. The previous record was 11, which Summers set last year.
Lindsay Pickering had two of Southeast's eight hits while Stacia Dopudja and Pickering added RBIs. Summers also scored twice.
Southeast will finish its season this weekend at Morehead State with a three-game series. Morehead State is in last place in the OVC standings with a 6-16 mark.
Tennessee-Martin will travel to fifth-place Tennessee State for its final three OVC games. Austin Peay, which is also two wins ahead of Southeast in the standings in seventh, finishes with a three-game series against fourth-place Eastern Kentucky.
The Redhawks won two of three against Tennessee-Martin, but dropped two of three against Austin Peay. Southeast has never failed to qualify for the conference tournament.