Softball team wins trio of close games
The Hastings softball team won a wild game over Stillwater on Monday, 10-9.
Hastings actually led 10-2 at one point before the Ponies came storming back.
“That was a very crazy game,” assistant coach Ken Lundquist said.
Hastings built on its lead steadily, but a wild inning in the bottom of the fourth got Stillwater back into it. The Ponies took advantage of some defensive errors on Hastings’ part and they scored six runs in the inning.
“We’re used to our defense playing better than it did,” Lundquist said. “Normally we make a lot of those plays. We looked back on that inning, and I think we gave them six outs. We should have gotten out of it only giving up a run or two.
Hastings took a 3-0 lead in the first inning. Michaela Mills singled and Rachel Thomas singled. Meagan Friederichs then delivered a three-run home to put Hastings up.
Stillwater added a run in the bottom of the second, but the Raiders exploded for five runs in the third inning.
Mills started the rally off with a triple. Thomas singled her in for an RBI and stole second. Friederichs singled to score Thomas. Friederichs advanced on a passed ball, then scored on a single by Shelby Wassink.
Paige Ahrens moved Wassink up with a sacrifice, and then a single by Autumn Kusske-Anderson scored Wassink.
Kusske-Anderson stole second and scored on a single by Alex Mohrhauser. Hastings led, 8-1.
After Stillwater added a run in the third to make it 8-2, Hastings scored two more runs in the top of the fourth to go up 10-2.
Wassink singled to score Thomas and Kusske-Anderson singled to score Wassink.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Ponies started stringing together a couple hits off of starting pitcher Mikayla Minnaert.
Friederichs came on in relief.
In the top of the sixth, the Ponies got another rally going. They had runners on first and second with two outs and attempted to steal third base. Thomas, playing catcher, threw out the runner trying to steal and Hastings got out of the inning.
“That was a big out,” Lundquist said. “When we saw the runner going, we had confidence Rachel was going to throw her out. That was a huge rally killer for them.”
Pitching wasn’t the problem for Hastings, Lundquist said.
“Mikayla pitched a really good game,” he said. “We just didn’t back her up the way we normally do. Still, to walk out of there with a win, we’ll take it.”
Vs Mounds View
Hastings beat Mounds View on Friday, 3-1.
The Mustangs scored their run in the first inning on an error. Friederichs shut down the Mounds View bats after that and the game was scoreless heading into the top of the seventh inning.
Hastings got a single by Mills, a single by Thomas and a single by Friederichs to load the bases.
With one out, Ahrens hit a fly ball to center field that Thomas tagged up on to score.
With the game tied 1-1 and runners on second and third, Kusske-Anderson had a two-out single to score two runs.
Hastings beat Park of Cottage Grove on Thursday, May 1, 1-0.
Minnaert was the starting pitcher for Hastings. She threw five innings and gave up just two hits. She was relieved by Friederichs, who pitched the final two.
Mohrhauser started the Hastings threat in the top of the seventh inning. Stacy Monjeau then came on to pinch-run for her. Lundquist called for a sacrifice bunt, but Monjeau read the sign wrong and stole second base.
Lundquist then called for another sacrifice bunt. Again, Monjeau read the sign as a steal and took off. Again, though, she was safe.
With two outs, Mills was intentionally walked. Thomas came up and hit a hard shot to the third baseman, whose throw to first was in the dirt. Thomas was safe and Monjeau scored the game-winning run on a walk-off error.
Vs East Ridge
Hastings lost to East Ridge on Tuesday, May 6, 7-1.
“We got baserunners on – we’re just not finding a way to knock them in,” Lundquist said.
Brooke Weber has been out of the lineup for the past handful of games, and her absence hurt, Lundquist said.
“She was a big difference in our order in the first part of the season as far as driving in runs,” he said. “She’s one of our leaders in RBIs, and she’s missed five games.”
Friederichs got the start for Hastings.