Sophomore third baseman Danae Bina of Marion scored the first of three runs in a go-ahead rally and fielded the final out to help lead Butler Community College to its first national junior college softball championship Saturday.
Bina singled with one on and Butler trailing defending national champion Chipola College of Marianna, Florida, 2-1, in the bottom of the fifth.
She advanced to second on a sacrifice and to third on a fielder’s choice, then scored on a bases-loaded single that drove in three runs before the hitter was tagged out trying to reach third.
Butler then held Chipola scoreless for two innings, with Bina fielding the final putout on a ground ball to third, giving the Grizzlies a 4-2 victory in the national championship game in St. George, Utah.
Butler had advanced to the championship game after defeating Chipola 10-0 in the semifinals and Yavapai College of Prescott, Arizona, 7-4 in the quarterfinals, both on Friday.
Bina went 1-for-2 in Saturday’s game, 1-for-3 with a run scored in the semifinals, and 1-for-2 with a run scored in the quarterfinals. She went 3-for-7 and 1-for-3 in the first two rounds to give her a .411 batting average for the tournament.
Butler finished its season 53-4, with its last loss coming 2½ months ago when it split a doubleheader March 3.