Greencastle, Ind. - Paige Price's eighth-inning sacrifice fly scored Grace Smith with the game-winning run and lifted DePauw to a 6-5 win over Denison in the North Coast Athletic Conference Tournament championship game. DePauw heads to the NCAA Division III Championship with a 31-12 record, while Denison's season comes to a close at 22-14.
Smith led off the eighth with a single, moved to second on Alyssa Nowak's sacrifice bunt and to third on a wild pitch. Price lifted a pop up to short left which the Denison shortstop caught while running toward the outfield allowing Smith to come home.
Nowak's second-inning sacrifice fly scored Smith before Amanda Howell hit a solo homer off the left field foul pole in the fourth to even the score at 1-1.
The score remained tied until Denison started a rally with two outs in the seventh. Colleen Hoffman gave Denison the lead with an RBI single before Lindsey Clemson drove in two with a double. Howell followed with a double to make it 5-1.
Smith started the bottom of the seventh by reaching on an error and moved to third when Nowak singled and advanced to second on the throw. Sidney Holler's single plated Smith and Price entered as a pinch-runner. Kate Geary delivered a single that scored Nowak and cut the Big Red lead to 5-3. Abey Bass hit a two-out fly ball that fell out of the center fielder's glove and allowed Geary and Price to score and even the game, 5-5.
Geary, Smith and Holler each had two of DePauw's 10 hits, while Howell led Denison with three of its 12 hits.
Cami Henry pitched a scoreless seventh to improve to 17-6, while Hoffman dropped to 12-6.
Smith was named the tournament MVP with the entire team listed below.