The Pipers appeared to have everything under control early, scoring four times in the top of the first inning. Hamline sent nine batters to the plate in the first inning, getting three hits — including an RBI single by Kristi Gravern (So., Maplewood, Minn.) — while also scoring on a pair of fielder’s choice plays at the plate and a bases-loaded walk.
Gustavus got one run back in the bottom of the first on a two-out home run to left field. The Gusties would continue to claw back, scoring another solo run in the third on an infield single before knotting the game at 4-4 on a two-run single in the bottom of the fifth.
The Gusties' Emily Klein (Red Wing, Minn.) delivered a game-winning single to left-center, scoring pinch runner Mackenzie Weber (St. Peter, Minn.) from second, as the defending regular-season champion Gusties earned a spot opposite St. Thomas in Saturday’s 1:30 p.m. tournament championship game at the SMU Field.
Hamline was limited to four hits in its final game of the season — three of which came in the first inning — while Gustavus finished with six hits, including two from Ewert.
Jessalyn Weaver (Jr., Eagan, Minn.) struck out six Gusties in taking the loss for Hamline.
Erin Farley (So., also had an RBI on a fielder's choice play and scored a run in the game.
The Pipers record is now 28-11, 18-4 MIAC. They must wait until Monday's announcements of the the regional tournament selections to find out if they will move on into the post-season.