After a semifinal victory on Saturday afternoon, the Texas A&M University-Commerce Lion softball team fell by a score of 3-1 in the Championship game of the Lone Star Conference in Kingsville.
The Lions dropped their fourth game of the season to the host Javelinas, and it was the third game in the season series between the two squads to be decided by two runs or fewer.
A&M-Commerce catapulted into Saturday night's title fight after a 2-0 blanking of Angelo State. Lone Star Conference Pitcher of the Year Emily Otto pitched a complete game shutout, for her 26th victory, 22nd complete game and 11th shutout of the season. The Lions were shut out for the first four innings of the game before scratching across runs in the fifth and sixth.
In the Championship game, A&M-Kingsville struck first, which the Lions answered with a run in the third. That was all the offense they would get, however, as the Javelinas plated two more insurance runs on the night to secure the victory. A&M-Commerce was held to just three hits, and the nation's best defense committed two errors on the night in the defeat.
The loss brings the regular season to a close with a record of 38-12 for the Lions, just one win shy of the squad's school-best regular season win total of 39 set last year.
A&M-Commerce is most likely locked into a playoff spot, coming into the weekend ranked second in the regional standings. The NCAA Division II Softball Selection Show will be broadcast online on May 6 at 9 a.m. A watch party is scheduled at MUGS on the Square, located at 1123 Main Street in Commerce.