ANGOLA, Ind. – The Trine University softball team finished off their NCAA Division III Super Regional with a bit of trickery to clinch their third trip to the Division III Women's College World Series (WCWS).
The team entered the bottom of the seventh inning with a 3-1 lead, just three outs away from a trip to Tyler, Texas. After grabbing two of those outs, visiting SUNY Geneseo moved a runner into scoring position at second prompting a visit to the circle from the Thunder coaching staff.
What followed that visit was a perfectly executed hidden ball trick play with senior Kate Saupe (Farwell, Mich. / Farwell) making a perfect fake throw into the outfield and then applying the game-ending tag to the baserunner.
The ruse was sold by diving supporting acting roles from juniors Makenna Hartline (Niles, Mich. / Brandywine), Claire Ryan (Union Grove, Wis. / Union Grove) and Michaela Hartline (Niles, Mich. / Brandywine).
The perfectly executed play earned national exposure as it came in as No. 9 on the Sunday, May 19 iteration of ESPN SportsCenter Top 10. If you missed it live you can see the Top 10 list online.
The Thunder will begin competition in the Division III WCWS this Thursday, May 23. Stay tuned to trinethunder.com for information on the team's upcoming contests.