Kara Dornbos continued her domination in the circle Friday, helping the Central Michigan softball team advance to the Mid-American Conference championship with a 2-0 win over Western Michigan.
The junior is now 3-0 with a save and 0.30 ERA in the tournament, allowing 16 hits.
Dornbos threw another complete game Friday, shutting out the Broncos after allowing just four hits and striking out three while not allowing a single walk. CMU now advances to the MAC title game at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Firestone Stadium in Akron, Ohio.
“Dornbos is pitching amazing,” said head coach Margo Jonker. “She is pitching the best in her career and it’s a good time for it.”
Dornbos needed some help from the Chippewas batters and she got it in the fourth inning. Senior left fielder Ashley Gilson recorded the team’s first hit of the game and a Molly Coldren walk set up a two-out, two-run double for freshman shortstop CarolAnn Sexauer.
The CMU offense had to battle with Broncos senior pitcher Meredith Whitney, who struck out 12 while allowing four hits.
“I knew she was going to bring it because it was 3-2 and I was ready to pounce on it,” Sexauer said. “I struck out the first time and I was ready.”
Dornbos and the Chippewas will have a few games to scout and watch who they will face in the finals because the winner of Friday’s night game between No.1 seed Ball State and No. 2 Miami University will play No. 5 seed WMU at 11 a.m. Saturday for a shot at the Chippewas.
Sixth-seeded CMU is riding a nine-game winning streak and, no matter who the Chippewas play at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, the opponent will have to win twice, completing a three-game day.
With one win on Saturday, the Chippewas would earn their 10th MAC Championship, a conference record.
“It feels great, I can’t even describe it,” Dornbos said. “Our defense played great all around and CarolAnn had a great hit, so I can’t ask any more of my teammates.”