Spartan girls defeat Duluth DenfeldThe Superior High School softball team wrapped up a stretch of playing six games in six days with a 4-3 win over the Duluth Denfeld Hunters Tuesday evening at Liebaert Field.
By: Ken Olson, Superior Telegram
The Superior High School softball team wrapped up a stretch of playing six games in six days with a 4-3 win over the Duluth Denfeld Hunters Tuesday evening at Liebaert Field.
Alison Wainionpaa picked up the win for the Spartans (9-7 overall, 4-1 Lake Superior Conference), limiting the powerful Hunters to just five hits with six strikeouts and five walks.
The loss drops the Hunters to 14-3 overall and 3-2 in the Lake Superior Conference.
Nikki Logergren suffered the loss for the Hunters, allowing nine hits with seven strikeouts and two walks.
Taylor Johnson, who went 3-for-4 with an RBI, scored Superior’s first two runs in the first and third innings. Johnson led off for the Spartans by sending the first pitch by Logergren up the middle for a single. After Emily Hansen’s sac bunt and a strikeout, Johnson scored on Taylor Thompson’s single to right field.
To say that Thompson’s single was “off the handle” was a bit of an understatement as the ball hit the senior on the hand when she swung the bat and split open a finger.
Johnson then tripled and scored on Hansen’s fielder’s choice in the third inning.
The Spartans took a 4-0 lead in the fourth inning when Taylor Nelson and Kari Miller drew two-out walks and scored on back-to-back singles by Rachal Fregin and Johnson.
Denfeld’s first run came in the sixth inning when Logergren tripled and scored on McKenzie Klaas’ single.
The Hunters made things interesting in the top of the seventh by scoring two runs on Logergren’s ground out and Kara Warren’s double. Wainionpaa got out of the jam by getting Klaas to ground out.
“We came into this game confident we could compete against a very good Denfeld team,” SHS coach Amy Zembo said. “The fourth inning was big for us, scoring the two runs with two outs. Taylor and Kari both walked with full counts, then Rachal and TJ followed up with big hits.
“Alison also pitched a gem and the defense made the plays behind her.”
The Spartans are back in action at 5 p.m. Thursday against Northwestern in Brule. They will also play in the Bloomer Tournament on Saturday.
SPARTAN SPIN: The SHS JV lost 8-4.
Duluth Denfeld 000 001 2 — 3
Superior 101 200 x — 4
Grand Rapids split
Superior followed up a split at the Hibbing Tournament with a doubleheader split with Grand Rapids Monday evening at Liebaert Field.
The Spartans won the opener Monday 10-3, but then lost the nightcap 4-3.
Thompson picked up the win in the opener for Superior, allowing eight hits with two strikeouts and three walks. She also had two hits and an RBI along with Johnson.
Also for the Spartans, Ari Jago scored three runs; Nelson had two hits and three RBIs; Fregin had two hits; Hansen had a hit and RBI; Kaitlyn Mergen had a hit and two RBIs; and Lindstrom singled.
Anya Olson suffered the loss for the Thunderhawks, allowing 10 hits with five strikeouts and two walks.
Superior led 2-0 in the second game until Grand Rapids scored all four of its runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. The Spartans scored a third run in the top of the seventh but were unable to tie the game.
Wainionpaa suffered the loss for Superior, allowing four hits with six strikeouts and two walks.
Lexi Koerbitz was the winner for Grand Rapids, allowing 10 hits with two strikeouts and one walk.
Hansen led Superior at the plate with three hits. Mergen added two hits and scored twice; Fregin was 2-for-3 with an RBI; Tailor Schuster singled in a run; Miller doubled; and Johnson singled.
SPARTAN SPIN: The SHS junior varsity lost both games, 5-3 and 5-4.
Grand Rapids 200 000 1 — 3 10 2
Superior 010 126 x — 10 12 0
Superior 000 101 1 — 3 10 3
Grand Rapids 000 004 x — 4 4 1
The Spartans defeated the host Blue Jackets 14-2 in five innings but then lost to Eveleth-Gilbert 7-6 Friday at the Hibbing Tournament.
Against Hibbing, Wainionpaa was the winning pitcher, allowing two hits with five walks and nine strikeouts.
Offensively for the Spartans, Lindstrom was 3-for-4 with four RBIs, two triples, a double and two runs scored; Johnson was 3-for-4 with two RBIs and three runs scored; Hansen tripled, singled, knocked in two runs and scored two others; Mergen had two hits with two RBIs and a run scored; Nelson tripled, doubled, knocked in two runs and scored two others; Wainionpaa doubled in a run; Schuster doubled and Miller had an RBI single.
Against E-G, Superior tied the game at 6-6 in the bottom of the sixth inning, but the Golden Bears scored the winning run in the top of the seventh.
Shannon Johnstad suffered the loss in relief of Wainionpaa. Johnstad allowed one run on a hit and walk in 2 1/3 innings. Wainionpaa worked the first 4 2/3 innings, allowing six runs on six hits, four walks and four strikeouts.
Hitting leaders for Superior were Hansen, 4-for-5 with an RBI; Kaitlin Heinen, double, single and two runs scored; Schuster, two RBIs; Mergen, double; Johnson, single, RBI, run scored; and Rachal Fregin, a single.
The Bears scored their winning run in the seventh inning on a single and three passed balls.
Superior threatened to tie the game in the bottom of the seventh inning. Fregin reached on a one-out, infield single but was forced out at second on Johnson’s fielder’s choice. Johnson moved to third on Hansen’s single, but the game ended when Lindstrom’s line drive to center was caught.
“We played two games of errorless defense and hit the ball well, particularly in the first game,” Zembo said. “We just couldn’t get all of the key hits we needed in the second game, when we had runners in scoring position in every inning.”
SPARTAN SPIN: The SHS JV won the championship by defeating Hibbing 14-4 and Eveleth-Gilbert 9-6. Heinen and Morgan Leinon were the winning pitchers.
Hibbing 200 00 — 2 2 2
Superior 417 2x — 14 16 0
Eveleth-Gilbert 103 020 1 — 7 7 4
Superior 020 112 0 — 6 10 0