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CEDAR FALLS — Southern Illinois completed a weekend softball sweep of Northern Iowa Sunday by rallying for a 7-5 victory in eight innings.

After defeating the Panthers 6-1 and 4-2 in 12 innings Saturday, the Salukis (31-11, 15-5) cemented their hold on second place in the Missouri Valley Conference standings and knocked UNI (22-22, 13-10) into fourth place.

Southern nicked UNI starting pitcher Emma Olejniczak for six hits and three runs in the first three innings.

The Panthers fought back with a run in the bottom of the third and four in the fifth to take a 5-3 lead, but the Salukis tied it in the sixth and then won it in the eighth.

Olivia Brooks, Adara Opiola and Tianna Drahn each had two hits for UNI while Sammey Bunch and Ashley Chesser had RBIs.

The Panthers host state rival Iowa Tuesday at 5 p.m. at Robinson-Dresser Complex.

Southern Ill. 7, UNI 5

Southern Ill. 012 002 02 — 7 12 1

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North. Iowa 001 040 00 — 5 9 1

Marousek, Miller (4), Jones (5) and Massa. Olejniczak, Oler (3), Craig (7) and Chesser. WP — Jones (21-7). LP — Craig (5-4). 2B — Vermejan (SIU), B. Krodinger (UNI), Bunch (UNI), Drahn (UNI). HR — Vermejan (SIU), Spicer (SIU).

Records: UNI 22-22, 13-10. Southern Illinois 31-11, 15-5.

Late Saturday

SOUTHERN ILL. 4, UNI 2, 12 inn.

Southern Ill. 100 001 000 002 — 4 10 1

North. Iowa 000 002 000 000 — 2 6 3

Miller, Jones (6) and Massa. Spencer and Chesser. WP — Jones (20-7). LP — Spencer (6-4). 2B — Jansen (SIU). HR — Jansen (SIU).

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Sports Editor for The Courier

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