Rains had delayed the 10 a.m. start to 4:10 p.m., but the teams were ready to battle.
Ohio Northern (41-7) jumped out to the lead early on the Tigers (39-7), but as the game went on, it was a back and forth battle.
After the Polar Bears seized a quick 1-0 lead, the Tigers roared back to take the lead back in the bottom of the second when Amy Hallett and Ashlee Anton scored. Ohio Northern answered in the top of the third when Kimi Blewett blasted a home run to left center field to score Jackie Mangola.
After DPU added another run in the third, Ohio Northern tied the game at 4-all in the top of the fifth inning after Cortney Cash reached on a single and when Tina Mangola reached on an error. With the scored tied, DePauw took control in the bottom of the sixth inning and put themselves in prime position to come away with the win.
In the sixth, Cymone Allen got things going with a single to right field and was moved to second on a bunt. With Allen standing on second, Brianne Weeks sent the first pitch she saw to center field for a double to score Allen, putting the Tigers up for good.
Starting pitcher Megan Soultz went to work in the seventh and struck out the final two batters to deliver DePauw to the NCCA Division III Softball Championship in Eau Claire, Wis.
Soultz, Emma Minx, Jen Kosinski and Weeks all made the all-tournament team for DePauw. They were joined by Ohio Northern's Blewett, Katie Cretin, Mandi Fought and Mangola; Washington's Megan Fleser, Clair Voris and Ashley Jansen; North Central's Mary Caron; and Trine's Rachel Wiseman and Tori Bluhm.
The Tigers are one of eight teams in action at the double-elimination championship tournament. They are set to battle Ithaca (33-13) at noon on Friday.
Division III Softball
Ohio N. 102 010 0 -- 4 7 1
DePauw 031 001 X -- 5 8 3
Cash and Blewett; Soultz and Hallett.
WP -- Soultz (28-5)
LP -- Cash (23-4)
2B -- Cretin, Anten (ON), Weeks (DPU)
HR -- Blewett (ON)