Southern sweeps Pitt, secures Sonic Trophy Series

Jessica Brooks watches a pitch come in high in an April 8 game Southern won 2-1.

Willie Brown

Jessica Brooks watches a pitch come in high in an April 8 game Southern won 2-1.

The momentum has been stopped for the Missouri Southern Lions softball team, but it wasn’t because of a loss. Southern, 22-17, 5-5 in the MIAA, was scheduled to play in the MIAA Crossover in Kirksville last week, but the tournament was forced to cancel due to weather conditions.

The Lions had just started to build momentum toward the postseason as they have gone 9-4 in their last 13 games.

“It hurts a little bit, but we would have played two teams that we have already seen [Pittsburg State and Lincoln],” Head Coach Bill Gray said. “We would have been able to play Emporia. which would have been good to see, but it has been good because gave us a chance to rest and get healthy.”

Southern might be facing the biggest stretch of their season this weekend as they travel to the MIAA’s No. 2 ranked team Emporia on Friday and then to the conference’s third-place team Missouri Western on Saturday.

On Wednesday, the Lions traveled to rival Pittsburg State University to take on the Gorillas in a Sonic Trophy Series doubleheader. The Lions swept PSU 1-0 and 5-1, earning the trophy for 2010-11 for Southern.

The Lions sit in fifth place in the conference and are in need of wins this weekend to make some noise. After the tough weekend, Southern will have eight games remaining, all of which are vital to a conference tournament berth.

“We feel like half those games are ones that we should win and the other half are games we could win,” Gray said. “We need to win the game we’re supposed to win and win a couple of those that we could win. We feel good about it right now.”

The Lions have started to become a balanced team over the last few weeks. The trio of Nicole Reed, Tiffany Benett and Kayce Moore in the circle has contributed a large part to the Lions’ success.