MONTGOMERY, Ala. – One run was all Texas Southern needed Wednesday as the Lady Tigers opened the 2019 Southwestern Athletic Conference Softball Tournament with a 1-0 win over Jackson State.
A’Leecia Bell’s RBI single in the first inning to score Terren Vinson from second base was the difference in the game as the Lady Tigers (21-25) advanced to the winner’s bracket semifinal round, where they will face host Alabama State on Thursday. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m.
Freshman pitcher Naomi Reyes, who was named to the All-SWAC Second Team earlier in the week, pitched a complete-game shutout while allowing only four hits and two walks. Reyes struck out nine batters in the game, and did not allow a runner to reach third base.
Senior catcher Marissa Padron went 2-for-2 at the plate, while Vinson, Tevanae Tate, and Haley Castro also knocked base hits in the game. Castro led off the bottom of the third inning with a double for TSU’s only extra base hit of the game.
The Lady Tigers wasted little time manufacturing their run, as Vinson led off the game with a bunt single. She then moved to second base on Julia Bilbao’s sacrifice bunt. Vinson then scored on Bell’s single to left field; TSU’s rally was halted at one run as Bell was retired at second base trying to stretch her hit into a double.
Texas Southern entered the tournament as the No. 1-seeded team from the SWAC’s West Division. The Lady Tigers won the division for the 10th consecutive year.
Alabama State, the No. 2-seeded team from the East Division, advanced to Thursday’s game with a 10-1 win over Southern.