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CNU finishes NCAA finals 2-2

Christopher Newport made the final four of the NCAA Div. III Softball Tournament before being eliminated Sunday with a 5-2 loss against Eastern Connecticut State in Eau Claire, Wis.

CNU (42-10) reached the eight-team, double-elimination national finals and finishes the season with the most wins in program history.

CNU beat Eastern Connecticut St. 8-0 to open the tournament. Freshman Maggie Farris (King’s Fork) was a defensive substitute at first base for the Lady Captains.

CNU lost its next game, 4-2 against East Texas Baptist. The Lady Captains stayed alive in the loser’s bracket with a 4-3 win against Luther (Iowa).

Luther led 2-1 until the fifth inning. Farris had a pinch-hit single to help start a 3-run CNU rally in the fifth.

CNU’s postseason came to a close Sunday night with Eastern Connecticut St. avenging its first-round loss.

Chowan junior Mindy Byrd (King’s Fork) was named First Team All-NCCAA (National Christian College Athletics Association) South Region for her softball season with the Lady Hawks.

Byrd, who was also an All-CIAA (Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association) outfielder, hit .384 with 11 doubles and 46 RBI this season.

Chowan won the CIAA regular season and tournament titles, going undefeated in the conference, in its first season in the CIAA. Chowan reached the NCAA Div. II Tournament for the first time in program history.

St. Augustine’s sophomore Christopher Copeland (Lakeland) has qualified for the NCAA Div. II Outdoor Track and Field Championships in the high jump.

Copeland won the high jump with a mark of 6-feet-9.25 on May 9 at the Duke Twilight meet. St. Augustine’s men’s team won every field event at Duke.

Copeland won the NCAA championship in the indoor season with a jump of 7-feet-0.5 at the national championship. The NCAA Outdoor Championships are set for May 27-29 at Johnson C. Smith University.

Marshall’s baseball squad finished its regular season with a 3-game sweep against Wright St.

The Thundering Herd (26-29, 12-12) is the No. 4 seed going into the Conference USA Tournament. It’s the best seeding by a Marshall baseball team since MU moved into Conference USA.

Freshman center fielder Isaac Ballou (Nansemond-Suffolk) added a two-RBI single during Marshall’s 9-7 win over Wright St. Thursday. For the season, Ballou’s started 38 games and played in 48, totaling three triples, two homers, 12 stolen bases and 24 runs.

Marshall plays No. 5 Houston to start the conference tourney on Wednesday in Houston.

Radford’s baseball team is the No. 3 seed going into the Big South Tournament starting Tuesday in Rock Hill, S.C.

Senior leadoff hitter Tyren Rivers (Nansemond River) is hitting .303 with five homers, 52 runs and 32 stolen bases for RU.

VMI (32-20, 13-14) is the No. 6 seed. Ombri Rivers (Nansemond River), Tyren’s younger brother, is hitting .327 with 17 runs in 28 games in his freshman year for VMI. Junior Justin Topping (Nansemond River) is hitting .260 with two homers and 16 RBI.

The Highlanders (29-24, 15-11) face No. 4 High Point Wednesday at 7 p.m. The Keydets play No. 7 UNC-Asheville Tuesday at 4 p.m.