Gophers softball team crushes Louisiana Tech 11-3 in NCAA tournament opener

Written by Bob on May 20th, 2017

St. Paul and Minneapolis StarTribune
By TOMMY DEAS Special to the StarTribune

TUSCALOOSA, ALA. – The Gophers grabbed a bat Friday and took out their frustrations.

Fortunately, they did so on a softball.

Minnesota, the No. 1-ranked team in the coaches’ poll that didn’t get seeded in the NCAA tournament, opened play in the Tuscaloosa Regional with an 11-3 victory over Louisiana Tech at Rhoads Stadium. The Gophers won in five innings by the mercy rule, but they weren’t in a particularly merciful mood.

The Big Ten regular-season and tournament champions improved to 55-3 and advanced to the winners’ bracket semifinal against host and 16th-seeded Alabama, which beat Albany 5-1. First pitch has been moved up two hours to 11:30 a.m. Saturday because of weather concerns.

“We just wanted to get out there really,” second baseman McKenna Partain said. “Just attack early, go for it early, get ahead early.”

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