Story by Chad Waller, Director of Communications & Sports Information
Pictures courtesy of Rick Dominowski, Click HERE to order
SIOUX CITY, Iowa – (Box Score) No. 2-seed Auburn Montgomery (Ala.) came back to win the ‘if necessary’ game to earn its second-straight World Series championship tonight against No. 3 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.). The Warhawks hoist the red banner after a 10-0, run-rule victory in six innings. Tonight’s contest concluded the 35th Annual NAIA Softball World Series, presented by Security National Bank and Morningside College.
The Warhawks become the third different NAIA program to win two-consecutive NAIA World Series championships joining Oklahoma City (2000-02; 1994-97) and former member Emporia State (Kan.) (1983-84).
““I give all the credit to the girls,” said Auburn Montgomery first-year head coach Eric Newell. “This is a talented, special group of girls. They had to get used to me, and everything I stand for. There were times where we had some tough moments throughout the season, but these girls are so special. But, it was like destiny for them to do it again.”
After giving up three runs on four hits in the first championship game today – an Auburn Montgomery loss – senior pitcher Cassie Jones rebounded with a five-hit shutout. She added 10 strikeouts to finish her five World Series games with dominance. In 31.0 innings in Sioux City, Jones allowed four earned runs and struck out 52 batters. She compiled a 0.90 ERA.
The Warhawks got all the offense it needed in a two-run first inning thanks to some power. With one out, Katie Spain and Lauren Shaw went yard in back-to-back fashion. It was Spain’s second homer of the World Series and Shaw’s first. At that point, Auburn Montgomery led 2-0.
After two more runs in the third and one in the fourth, Auburn Montgomery made it a blow-out with five runs in the top of the sixth inning. Shaw was in the middle of the scoring again, as she singled home two runs to make it 7-0.
Shaw came around to score, along with Spain, on a three-run roundtripper from Kayla Hale. Hale’s bomb was the team’s seventh of the World Series.
Spain finished 4-for-4 to lead the 14-hit attack for the Warhawks. For the event, Spain went 10-for-17 (.588) with seven runs scored and six RBIs. Shaw collected three hits, which included a double and home run. Hale and Hayden Henderson each tallied a pair of hits.
Lindsey Wilson batters mustered just five singles on the day.
With 411 season strikeouts, Jones now has surpassed 1,000 career whiffs becoming just the fourth NAIA pitcher to accomplish feat. She moved to 35-5 on the year.
Lindsey Wilson starter Jordan Hood fell to 21-3 on the year. She allowed eight runs (seven earned) on 11 hits in 3.0 innings.
Lindsey Wilson, appearing in it’s first-ever title game, ends the year at 53-8 overall. The Blue Raiders went 5-2 in the 2015 World Series.
The double-elimination event is being played out at the Elizabeth & Irving Jensen Softball Complex. The City of Sioux City and Morningside College serve as official hosts for the first time. For more information on the 2015 NAIA Softball World Series, click here.
At the conclusion of the World Series, the following individuals were named to the 2015 NAIA Softball All-World Series Team.
2015 NAIA Softball All-World Series Team
Sorted by school
Cassie Jones, Auburn Montgomery (Ala.), P
Katie Spain, Auburn Montgomery (Ala.), 3B
Laci Driggers, Auburn Montgomery (Ala.), OF
Markie Smith, Campbellsville (Ky.), C
Michele Rupard, Central Methodist (Mo.), C
Meghan Luebbert, Concordia (Ore.), OF
Mariah Jimenez, Concordia (Ore.), 1B
Alex Vargas, Dickinson State (N.D.), INF
Jordan Hood, Lindsey Wilson (Ky.), P
Amanda Trampe, Lindsey Wilson (Ky.), INF
Travatia Bowden, Lindsey Wilson (Ky.), OF
Julinn Torres, LSU Alexandria (La.), RF/Utility
Taylor Clinkenbeard, Mobile (Ala.), OF
Tara Moates, Oregon Tech, INF
Katie Virtue, Oregon Tech, OF
Kimberly Gilbert, William Carey (Miss.), INF
World Series Most Valuable Player: Cassie Jones, Auburn Montgomery (Ala.)
• The 10-0 victory is the largest margin for a shutout in the championship since 1997, when Oklahoma City took down former member Athens State (Ala.) by a 12-0 count. That margin is also the largest margin of victory overall.
• The 10 runs scored is tied for the second-most accomplished in World Series title game history.
• In five World Series games, the Warhawks held a 31-4 scoring margin.
• Overall, this is the ninth shutout in 35 years of the World Series event.
• Auburn Montgomery becomes the fifth different team to win at least two-plus banners.
• The Warhawks have now won 25 NAIA national championships overall, with 23 previous NAIA national titles in men’s and women’s tennis. It is also the third NAIA Softball National Championship for the state of Alabama. The University of Mobile claimed the NAIA Softball World Series championship in 2006.