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Cal state San Marcos softball players celebrate after winning the NCAA Division II regional championship. Courtesy photo/Crash Kamon
Cal state San Marcos softball players celebrate after winning the NCAA Division II regional championship. Courtesy photo/Crash Kamon
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CSUSM softball heads to Division II World Series

SAN MARCOS — The Cal State San Marcos softball team advanced to the NCAA Division II World Series for the first time in school history after winning the West Super Regional championship on May 19.

Despite being seeded sixth in the regional tournament, the Cougars came from behind in the second game to sweep Concordia University Irvine in a best-of-three series to take home their first regional title.

CSUSM (32-19) will vie for the World Series title in Chattanooga, Tennessee, a double-elimination tournament that runs May 25 to May 31. The Cougars, seeded eighth of eight teams, play their first game at 11 a.m. Eastern time on Thursday against top seed University of Texas at Tyler (59-4).

“It’s been their goal all year long to make it to Tennessee. To be here is such a great moment for this team,” head coach Stef Ewing said. “It’s been an awesome ride so far, and here we are, we’re facing the No. 1 seed and we’re like, ‘Bring it.’”

The path to victory at the regional tournament began with wins against Sonoma State, Cal State Dominguez Hills and Azusa Pacific University, propelling the team to the best-of-three Super Regional against Concordia.

The CSUSM Cougars celebrate after qualifying for the Division II Softball World Series with a two-game sweep of Concordia University Irvine. Courtesy photo
The CSUSM Cougars celebrate after qualifying for the Division II Softball World Series with a two-game sweep of Concordia University Irvine. Courtesy photo

CSUSM won the first game, 9-0, on May 18, but found themselves trailing 3-1 in the bottom of the sixth inning in the second game the next day. The Cougars tied the game — scoring on an error and wild pitch — followed by a home run from Madison Waymire to give them a 4-3 lead. Savannah Coyle pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the top of the seventh to seal their ticket to Chattanooga.

“The team never panicked, and we just kept chipping away,” Ewing said.

While much of the team is made up of freshmen and sophomores, three players continued the celebration at CSUSM graduation ceremonies on May 19 and 20, with the regional championship trophy brought on stage.

If they win their first game, the Cougars play next at noon on Friday ET and at 11 a.m. ET on Saturday if they lose.