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Storm beat Wartburg, fall to Luther in IIAC Championship

Storm beat Wartburg, fall to Luther in IIAC Championship

DECORAH, Iowa - Tori Haag's walkoff homer gave Simpson a 4-2, nine-inning win over Wartburg in the semifinal round but the Storm lost to top-seeded Luther 8-6 in the championship game Saturday at the Iowa Conference Softball Tournament.

Haag homered three times on the day - including twice against Wartburg - as the second seeded Storm (30-9) came up three runs shy of earning the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Norse (36-2) beat Central 17-11 to advance to the championship game before capturing their fourth tournament title in the last six years.

The NCAA announces the field of 62 teams in an online selection show scheduled to stream Monday, May 9 at Noon on NCAA.com. The Storm are hoping to be one of 18 at-large teams to qualify for the tournament. 

Haag enjoyed a monster day, going 5-for-9 with two doubles, three home runs and six RBIs. She had a 1.778 slugging percentage on the day as Simpson won its 1,000 game in program history. 

Simpson 4, Wartburg 2
Haag sent Simpson to the title game with a two-run blast off Kimberly Wedeking in the ninth, making a winner of Riley Fisher. Haag gave Simpson a 2-0 lead with a solo blast in the fifth before Wartburg evened it up on back-to-back singles in the sixth.

Haag went 3-for-4, Arianna Kim drove in a run on a double in the third and Fisher (15-1) allowed four hits and struck out 10. 

Luther 8, Simpson 6
Bailey Victoria gave Luther an 8-5 lead with a two-RBI double in the sixth and Annie Versnik worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the seventh to give Luther the title. Rachel Guessford homered to lead off the seventh and a pair of errors helped Simpson load the bases before Haag popped out to Versnik, who made a diving catch to end the game.

A sacrifice fly by Annie Stolte gave Simpson a 1-0 lead in the second before Luther came back with three in the third. Luther led 5-1 before Haag roped a two-RBI double to tie it 5-5 in the sixth.

Versnik (5-0) threw 1 2/3 innings in relief after Simpson roughed up top pitchers Amanda Witzlib and Samantha Bratland. Fisher (15-2) gave up six hits and six runs - three earned - in 4 2/3 innings.