Purdue Calumet to Take on Top-Seeded St. Xavier Thursday in CCAC Tourney

By: Purdue University Northwest Last Updated: May 4, 2016

Purdue-Calumet-to-Take-on-Top-Seeded-St-Xavier-Thursday-in-CCAC-TourneyThe Purdue University Calumet softball team earned a bid into the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament for the second-straight year, as the Peregrines will face top-seeded St. Xavier Thursday afternoon in the first round of the double-elimination tournament.

The No. 8 seed Peregrines (22-27) will take on the No. 1 seed and NAIA fifth-ranked Cougars (37-5-1) at 2 p.m. (CT) at the Ballpark in Rosemont, Ill., where the eight-team tournament is being held.

If the Peregrines were to win, they would face the winner of No. 4 seed Olivet Nazarene and No. 5 seed Judson Friday at 10 a.m. CT in the winners bracket. A loss would drop Purdue Calumet to the loser's bracket, where they would play again Thursday at 6 p.m. against the loser of the ONU/Judson contest.

For the full bracket: http://www.ccacsports.com/article/2725.php

St. Xavier holds a 5-1 advantage over the Peregrines in the all-time series, with the Peregrines last defeating the Cougars on April 25, 2014, thanks to a stellar pitching performance from former ace Alison Kimble who led the Peregrines to a 1-0 victory. The Cougars defeated the Peregrines in two games on April 24 earlier this season with scores of 6-0 and 6-3.

Purdue Calumet made a splash in its first-ever CCAC Tournament appearance in 2015, as the sixth-seeded Peregrines stunned three-seed and NAIA National Tournament qualifer Judson 5-0 in the opening round. Purdue Calumet would fall in its next game, a 8-4 setback to Olivet Nazarene, before bouncing back with a 1-0 win over Calumet St. Joseph in the loser's bracket to stay alive in the tournament. Eventual NAIA qualifier St. Francis (Ill.) would end Purdue Calumet's run in a 2-0 setback in the quarterfinals. Alison Kimble and Skyler Woods were both named to the CCAC Tournament Team for their efforts.

The Purdue University Calumet softball split its final CCAC doubleheader against Trinity Christian April 28. The Peregrines dropped the first game to the Trolls (10-28, 6-18) 2-0, but came back and defeated TCC in Game 2, 7-2.

Holly Pagan (Bartlett, Ill./Bartlett) and Alex Morales (Bartlett, Ill./Bartlett) led the offense for the Peregrines with a perfect 3-for-3 day each, while Taylor Kotzo (Munster, Ind./Munster) and Samantha Oppenhuis (Munster, Ind./Iliiana Christian)each notched two hits in Game 2, including Oppenhuis' second home run of the season.

Saint Xavier is led by senior pitching ace and NAIA All-American Nicole Nonnemacher, who has a team-high .420 batting average, 37 RBI, two home runs and 28 runs scored. Nonnemacher also leads the Cougars in the circle with a 1.07 ERA and 21-2 record with 314 strikeouts on the season.

Sophomore Alex Morales (Bartlett, Ill./Bartlett) headlines the Peregrines offense with a .331 batting average, 23 RBI and 30 runs scored while freshman Olivia Sardella (Dyer, Ind./Lake Central) is batting .312 with 25 RBI and 21 runs scored.Murphy headlines the pitching staff with a 2.59 ERA in 29 appearances in the circle and holds a 12-11 record.

Live stats and audio will be available for all of the CCAC Tournament games at http://portal.stretchinternet.com/puc/

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