The Crookston Pirate Softball team lost 16-1 in four innings against Thief River Falls ending their season in the opening round of the Section 8AA Tournament at MEC Park in Thief River Falls for the second straight year.
After the first two Pirates struck out to open the first inning, Jasmin Hanson blasted a solo home run over the right-center field fence giving Crookston a 1-0 lead into the bottom of the first inning. Thief River Falls responded by taking the lead for good in the bottom of the first inning. Alexa Rogalla walked to start the inning before Alexis Huot singled putting runners on first and second base. Gabriella Steele singled to plate Rogalla tying the game at 1-1. “Jasmin swings hard,” noted Crookston head coach Robbe Nessler. “All year long I’ve told her, ‘if you connect solidly with the ball, that thing is going to travel,’ and that’s exactly what happened there. It was nice to see her jump on a ball and be aggressive at the plate.” Khloe Lund hit a sacrifice fly into right field that plated Hewitt before Gabby Steele scored from second base when the cutoff throw was dropped at second base giving the Prowlers a 3-1 lead into the second inning. In the bottom of the second inning, Thief River Falls put the game away for good.
Breanna Wienen singled to start the inning, before advancing to third base after an errant throw by Crookston’s left fielder back into the infield. Eme Gunderson walked putting runners on the corners before Haylie Rogalla hit a groundout allowing Wienen to score from third base boosting the Prowlers’ lead to 4-1. Alexa Rogalla reached on her second walk putting runners on first and second base before an Alexis Huot single loaded the bases. Camryn Schwabb roped a double up the middle plating two more runners giving Thief River Falls a 6-1 lead. Gabby Steele walked, putting runners back on first and second base for Hannah Magnusson. Magnusson singled plating Schwab before the bases were reloaded allowing Eme Gunderson to walk in a run giving the hosts an 8-1 lead. Magnusson scored on a wild pitch to make it 9-1 before Gunderson came across home plate on a wild pitch that made it 10-1. Haylie Rogalla walked before ultimately scoring on another wild pitch with Alexa Rogalla getting hit by a pitch with the bases loaded later in the inning to conclude the ten-run second inning that gave the Prowlers a 13-1 lead. “When they were up to bat and (pitcher Jenna Coauette) made them work they found those gaps,” explained Nessler. “We made the plays defensively, that generally speaking, we can make. Jenna, at times, had some struggles with control, but I thought also she threw to contact and did a pretty nice job of making our defense work.”
Thief River Falls extended their lead in the third inning. Camryn Schwab was hit by a pitch to open the bottom of the third inning before Gabby Steele walked putting runners on first and second base. Khloe Lund singled in Schwab putting TRF ahead 14-1. After two straight pop-outs, Eme Gunderson walked to load the bases. Haylie Rogalla walked in the Prowlers fifteenth run before a wild pitch enabled Lund to score from third base giving the hosts a 16-1 lead heading into the top of the fourth inning. Alexa Rogalla wrapped up her strong performance in the circle striking out the side in the fourth inning securing the 16-1 win in four innings for Thief River Falls over Crookston. “(Thief River Falls), they’re tough, they are a good team,” summarized Nessler. “For us, we needed to generate some more offense. We made some contact at times, we had two hits, maybe one or two walks, but we know we need to be able to be a little bit more aggressive at the plate. We, unfortunately, let too many good pitches sail past us today. Defensively, we made the plays that were there for us.”
While disappointed with how the season ended, Nessler is excited about what lies ahead for this program, “I think the biggest thing that we have going for us is that we return everybody here. We have a lot of girls with a lot of varsity experience, so next year we’ve got no excuse. We plan on doing some summer ball and things like that so the hope is getting a few extra games in, just having some experience at the varsity level and staying positive, bringing back our top two or three pitchers doesn’t hurt either, so again hopefully next year we can build off of all those things and create a little more success here for our program.”
Crookston concludes its season with a 2-17 record. Thief River Falls improves to 19-3 and will take on East Grand Forks in Park Rapids on Thursday at 4:00 p.m.
|Thief River Falls||3||10||3||X||16||8||0|
|Jenna Coauette – Crookston||3.0||8||16||15||11||0|
|Alexa Rogalla – TRF||4.0||2||1||1||1||9|
Jasmin Hanson – 1-2, HR, RBI, run
Emma Boll – 1-2
For Thief River Falls
Alexis Huot – 2-3, 2 runs
Breanna Wienen – 2-3, 2 runs