Saints' softball is back in the NCAA West Regionals after 9 years


Saint Martin’s softball team will have their postseason run extended as they qualified for the NCAA Div II West Regionals for the first time since the 2015 season at the No. 7 seed in the region.

The announcement came after the conclusion of the 2024 Great Northwest Athletic Conference (GNAC) Softball Championships last May 4, where the Saints finished third after bowing down to tournament runners-up Northwest Nazarene University in the lower bracket final.

This comes from the heels of another fruitful season from the Saints finishing the regular and GNAC tournament with a 26-20 overall record and with notable season performances from Ashley Goodale, Britney Patrick, Chloe Leverington, and current GNAC Freshman of the Year Heather Ebner, getting   all under the tutelage of head coach Jim Peterson.

"I'm proud of our team performance this season and it's a tribute to the hard work the players have put in to put our team in this position. Our team is excited for the opportunity to participate in the regional playoffs," said Peterson about the Saints’ qualification to the West regionals.

This will be the third trip of the Saints in the West regionals after winning the GNAC trophy in 2013, their inaugural title, and finishing third in the GNAC tournament in 2015.

The Saints, who were #3 seed in the 2024 regular season, finished third in the 2024 GNAC Championships held at the Viking Field in Bellingham last May 2-4. They dropped their opening game against eventual champions Western Washington University, 1-4, before keeping out of elimination after beating Central Washington University, 4-1, in the win-or-go-home game after heroics from Leverington’s four strikeouts with only one run earned through all seven innings.

They missed yet another shot in the GNAC Final after a 0-8 beatdown in six innings from the hands of the Northwest Nazarene Nighthawks in the lower bracket final. That was the fourth time both teams faced in the GNAC Championships history, with the Saints losing all four meetings.

But the Saints have another try for redemption as their No. 7 seed placement in the NCAA West Regional bracket sets up a rematch against the No. 2 seed Nighthawks in the first round, at Halle Field, in Nampa, Idaho on Thursday, May 9 at 4:00 PM.

On the other side of the Nampa bracket are No. 3 seed Concordia Irvine and No. 6 seed Cal State Dominguez Hill, both from California. The four universities mentioned will be sifted in a double elimination tournament up to May 11, with the winner facing the Bellingham bracket winners to a three-game super regional series for a spot in the NCAA DII Championships.

The Saints (in white) will face the Nighthawks again, this time in the NCAA West Regionals.
The Saints (in white) will face the Nighthawks again, this time in the NCAA West Regionals.


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