Otahkians split on opening day of OVC tournament

Saturday, May 4, 2002

RICHMOND, Ky. -- Southeast Missouri State University's softball team began the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament impressively.

But the Otahkians ended Friday's opening rounds of play in somewhat dubious fashion.

The Otahkians, seeded fifth for the six-team event, defeated Austin Peay 5-3 in the first round.

Then, in the winner's bracket final, top-seeded and host Eastern Kentucky routed the Otahkians 7-0 behind the no-hit performance of OVC Pitcher of the Year Jonelle Csora.

Southeast (14-26) will take on Tennessee-Martin at 9 a.m. today in the loser's bracket of the double-elimination event.

Csora (20-6) struck out nine and walked three to lead the Colonels (31-11).

Kelly Birk (7-11) took the loss, giving up six hits and six runs (three earned) in four innings.

Birk was the winner during the victory over Austin Peay. She hurled four shutout innings, allowing just one hit, with four strikeouts and one walk.

Kristen King notched a save. She worked the final three innings, allowing three hits and three runs, all of them unearned.

The Otahkians had 11 hits, led by Birk, Courtney Eklund and Kemi Rampi with two each.

All-OVC honors

Four Otahkians received mention on the all-conference teams that were announced Friday.

Senior catcher Jennifer Cobin made the first team. She batted .302 during the regular season.

Junior second baseman Brooke Nett (.307) and senior outfielder Courtney Eklund (.277) made the second team. Senior first baseman Reagan Hamlin (.261) received honorable mention honors.

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