College of Idaho softball

College of Idaho pitcher Hannah McNerney gets ready to deliver a pitch against Eastern Oregon in May.

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The College of Idaho softball team clinched an automatic bid to the NAIA championships on Sunday before falling to Oregon Tech in the Cascade Conference Tournament Championship.

The Yotes (41-15) clinched the Cascade Conference’s second automatic bid by beating Eastern Oregon 8-2 in the elimination bracket to advance to the tournament championship against host Oregon Tech, which had already secured its bid by winning the regular season title. The Owls took the tournament championship 1-0 in eight innings.

Hannah McNerney earned her 15th win in the circle in the win against Eastern Oregon, while Haley Loffer went 3 for 4 at the plate, driving in two runs during a five-run fourth inning, which saw the Yotes take a 6-2 lead. Hattie Hruza, Lexi Navarrete and Kaily Christensen each drove in a run during the inning.

In the championship, Katelyn Wilfert took a shutout into extra innings and allowed just three hits against the Owls, but a fielding error with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning allowed the walkoff run to score for Oregon Tech.

Owls’ pitcher Sarah Abramson held the College of Idaho to four hits.

The Yotes will find out where they are headed for the opening round of the NAIA Tournament on Tuesday.

NIGHTHAWKS GET NO. 8 SEED AT REGIONALS: The Northwest Nazarene softball team will be the No. 8 seed at the NCAA Division II West Regional Tournament and will head to San Marcos, California, where it will face tournament host and No. 1 seed Cal State San Marcos in the opening round, the NCAA announced Monday.

The Nighthawks (32-19) and Cougars will play at 1 p.m. Thursday. The West Region is split into two four-team double-elimination pods, with the winner from each pod playing in a best-of-three series. Also in the Nighthawks’ pod is No. 4-seed Sonoma State and No. 5 Cal State Monterey Bay.

The other pod is made up of host No. 2 Concordia (Calif.), No. 3 Chico State, No. 6 Cal State Dominguez Hills, and No. 7 Azusa Pacific.

The Nighthawks are in the tournament for the second straight year and third time in the last four full seasons after clinching the automatic bid over the weekend by winning the GNAC Tournament. Northwest Nazarene is the only GNAC team to qualify.

NNU NO. 1 SEED AT GNAC BASEBALL TOURNEY: Despite being off over the weekend, the Northwest Nazarene baseball team still earned a share of the GNAC regular season title and will be the No. 1 seed in the postseason tournament, which begins Thursday in Monmouth, Oregon.

The Nighthawks (29-19) will face No. 3 seed Montana State-Billings at 2 p.m. MDT on Thursday and No. 2 seed Western Oregon at 5 p.m. After round robin play on Thursday, the championship will be Friday. If all three teams go 1-1 in round robin, Montana State-Billings and Western Oregon would play a semifinal game, with the winner facing the Nighthawks for the title. If one team goes 0-2 on Thursday, they are eliminated with the other two teams playing for the championship. Under that scenario, the team that went 1-1 on Thursday would need to win twice on Friday.

YOTE BASEBALL FALLS IN FIRST ROUND: The College of Idaho baseball team found itself in an early hole as the Yotes dropped their Cascade Conference opener on Monday, 10-3 to British Columbia.

The Thunderbirds jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the top of the first inning and the Yotes (29-20) were not able to claw their way back into the game.

The College of Idaho moves to the elimination bracket, where it will face Corban at 3 p.m. MDT today in Lewiston.

Jonah Hultberg hit a solo home run for the College of Idaho, while Alex McFarland-Smith had three hits.

BOISE STATE SWEEPS NEW MEXICO, EXTENDS WIN STREAK TO NINE: The Boise State softball team finished off a three-game sweep of New Mexico 7-2 on Sunday, extending its winning streak to nine games.

Eliyah Flores had a two-run home run in the first inning for the Broncos (37-10, 16-5 Mountain West), then Kelsey Lalor broke a 2-2 tie in the third inning with an RBI single. Boise State made the third a three-run inning with a sacrifice fly by Alycia Flores and Alison Seng hitting an RBI single to make it 5-2.

Boise State will conclude the regular season with three games at Colorado State, starting Thursday. The Broncos will enter the final weekend trailing San Diego State by two games in the Mountain West standings.

PREP ROUNDUP

SOFTBALL

HOMEDALE 19, PARMA 0, 5 INNINGS: Olivia Asumendi struck out 11 and allowed just one hit over five innings and added a pair of RBIs at the plate as Homedale punched its ticket to the 3A State Tournament on Monday.

The Trojans (17-5) will first host Weiser for the 3A District III championship on Wednesday.

Katie Christoffersen, Amaia Aberasturi and Belisia Larzelier each added two RBIs.

WEISER 11, PAYETTE 1, 5 INNINGS: Tobie Noyer pitched a five-inning no-hitter as Weiser advanced to the district title game.

Noyer, Paisley Noyer and Grace Swank each drove in two runs for the Wolverines (15-8).

BASEBALL

FRUITLAND 6, HOMEDALE 4: Jakob Wise had an RBI triple in the bottom of the sixth inning, then came home on a Cole Tuttle single, giving Fruitland a 6-0 lead and providing the Trojans with much-needed insurance runs before a Homedale comeback effort.

The Trojans scored four runs in the top of the seventh inning with Dillon Fine and John Lejardi getting back-to-back two-out two-RBI hits before Landen Mendive finished a complete-game effort on the mound with a strikeout.

Mendive had 14 strikeouts for the Grizzlies (14-9), who will face Weiser for the 3A District III title on Wednesday.

WEISER 12, PAYETTE 2, 5 INNINGS: Willy Shirts had a double, triple and two RBIs and Jack Burke drove in three runs as Weiser punched its ticket to the 3A State Tournament.

Kaleb Grove allowed three hits in five innings on the mound for the Wolverines (18-4).

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