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CHICAGO -- The University of Northern Iowa softball team has secured the No. 3 seed for the Missouri Valley Conference tournament following a 6-1 win at Loyola Sunday afternoon at Loyola Softball Park.

UNI (26-22, 16-10 MVC) will begin play in the semifinal round of the single-elimination MVC tournament 6:30 p.m. Thursday against either Valparaiso, Evansville or Illinois State in Peoria, Ill.

Another masterful performance by pitcher Jaclyn Spencer helped UNI silence Loyola’s bats Sunday as the Panthers finished the regular season with a series sweep. Spencer allowed just one unearned run on six hits with five stikeouts versus no walks.

During 19 innings this week, UNI’s junior struck out 19 and picked up three wins with only one earned run crossing the plate.

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It took just four hits for UNI to accumulate six runs in this regular season finale.

UNI overcame an early 1-0 deficit by taking advantage of an error during a two-run fourth inning against Loyola relief pitcher Kiley Jones. The Panthers added a pair runs in the top of the sixth inning on a two-run homer by Courtney Krodinger. Brittney Krodinger then drove two home with a single in the top of the seventh.

Olivia Brooks and Adara Opiola also recorded hits for UNI during the victory.

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Sports Reporter

Sports reporter for The Courier

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