The West Marshall Fusion Softball team, a cooperative of Stephen-Argyle and Warren-Alvarado-Oslo, could not quite keep up with the offensive attack of the Ada-Borup/West Cougars as they fell by a score of 16-8 on a very windy day in Warren.
The first inning was full of runs as the Cougars started things off with four runs. A hit by pitch on a two-strike count put the leadoff hitter on. She got to third on a passed ball and wild pitch and after a walk, scored on a steal of home on a first and third steal play to take a 1-0 lead. With the bases loaded, a ground ball to third was thrown home to get the lead out, but the throw was wide allowing two runs to score. Then, a groundball out brought in another run to give the Cougars a 4-0 lead.
The Fusion were able to answer with four runs of their own in the bottom of the inning. Marey Kazmierczak led off with a double. An error put runners on the corners and Erin Jubie brought in a run on a fielder’s choice. Then, MaKenna Swanson, Regan Swanson, and Annika Magnusson hit three consecutive run-scoring singles to tie the game heading into the second inning. “Getting down early it’s easy to fold the tent, but we pecked away at it,” said the West Marshall Head Coach Rick Looker. “I think eleven [hits] is the most we’ve had in a game. I keep telling the girls that we are going to get better and this shows it.”
The Cougars added three more runs in the second inning. A hit by pitch put the leadoff runner on. After a strikeout, Kayliana Dahl hit a no-doubt home run to left field to take a 6-4 lead. Josie Rivard got another strikeout but a passed ball allowed the hitter to reach base. Then with two outs, a hit by pitch, and a single loaded the bases for Brooke Scherfenberg who hit a single to bring in another run and give Ada-Borup/West a 7-4 lead.
Both teams went scoreless in their next offensive innings before West Marshall cut the lead to one in the bottom of the third. With two runners on and one out, MaKenna Swanson drove a ball to the fence in right-center field for a two RBI double to cut the Cougars lead to 7-6.
The Cougars got both of those runs back in the fourth inning. A single from Lauren Thompson brought in the first run and then Thompson scored on Emma Stewart’s groundout to increase the lead to 9-6.
The Cougars continued to put runs on the board with four more in the fifth inning. A leadoff single got a runner on for Lillian Bitker and she subsequently hit a two-run homer just inside of the left field foul line to give the Cougars an 11-6 lead. The next two batters were retired before a single and another passed ball allowed a strikeout victim to reach base. The two runners on base came around to score using stolen bases, passed balls, and wild pitches to make the score 13-6 heading into the bottom of the fifth. “We are inexperienced and we are going to make some mistakes. We have some athletes… it’s going to take some time,” added Coach Looker.
Ada-Borup/West struck again in the top of the sixth with a leadoff triple from Ariel Johnson and a groundout that scored Johnson’s courtesy runner from third.
The Cougars kept adding insurance runs with two more in the seventh inning. A walk and an error put two runners on to start the inning and they advanced a base on a wild pitch. On a throw to first to complete a strikeout on a dropped third strike the first run of the inning came in to score. Johnson then got a RBI single to bring in another and make it a 16-6 game.
The Fusion did not go down without a fight in the seventh as they added two more runs. The first run of the inning came on a solo home run by Jubie to left-center field. Coach Looker told Jubie before the game that he is feeling a home run for her and she came through with one. “I’m just happy for her. I’m so glad she came back out this year,” smiled Coach Looker. “She is a true leader. I’m just very happy for her.” With one out, Rivard singled and another batter reached on a walk. With two outs, Magnusson singled to bring in the second run of the inning. A walk loaded the bases, but a swinging strikeout ended the threat and the game as the Cougars came away with the 16-8 victory.
The West Marshall Fusion fall to 0-6 on the season. They will visit Red Lake County on Friday as they look to pick up their first win. “We just need to keeping working through the process. We are going to right the ship. It’s going to happen. It’s just playing the right way and things will take care of itself,” added Coach Looker.
Ada-Borup/West improves to 4-2 this season. They have a doubleheader at Mahnomen-Waubun on Tuesday and a doubleheader at home against Fertile-Beltrami on Friday.
|Josie Rivard- West Marshall||7||13||16||12||8||7|
|Ariel Johnson- Ada-Borup/West||7||11||8||7||5||6|
Kayliana Dahl- 2 for 4, home run, 2 RBI, 2 runs
Kaisa Jones- 2 for 4, 3 runs
Lillian Bitker- 2 for 5, home run, 2 RBI, run
Ariel Johnson- 2 for 5, triple, RBI, run
Grace Engelstad- 2 for 3, 2 RBI, 2 runs
Brooke Scherfenberg, Emma Stewart, and Lauren Thompson- One hit each
For West Marshall
MaKenna Swanson- 3 for 3, double, 3 RBI, run
Marey Kazmierczak- 3 for 5, double, run
Erin Jubie- 2 for 3, home run, 2 RBI, run
Annika Magnusson- 2 for 4, 2 RBI
Maddy Groven- 2 for 4
Josie Rivard and Regan Swanson- One hit each