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Waldorf opens season with three losses

waldorf-warriors-outline_1By Aaron Schneider

ABERDEEN, S.D. – The Waldorf College softball team opened the season with losses to Presentation College, Dakota Wesleyan University and the University of Jamestown in the Aberdeen Dome Tournament on Saturday.

“It is always good to get the first games under your belt, so you know what you need to work on moving forward,” Waldorf coach Lexy Determan said.

Presentation (2-0) held on for a 5-3 win over the Warriors (0-3) in the opener. Dakota Wesleyan (1-6) handled Waldorf in an 11-6 victory and the Warriors concluded the day with a 6-1 loss to Jamestown (4-2).

“Although the outcomes of the games were not what we had hoped for, every problem that we had was something that can be fixed.” Determan said.

Waldorf produced 17 hits and drew 10 walks throughout the day, but struggled to bring the runners in to score. The Warriors left 21 runners on base, including 14 in scoring position.

“We stranded a lot of baserunners, which is promising because we had a lot of baserunners,” Determan said. “That means that we need to dig a little deeper and figure out how to step up in those situations.”

Senior Jessica Abrahamson went 2-for-3 at the plate to lead the Warriors with a pair of doubles against Presentation. Senior Kaitlin Murphy finished 2-for-4 with an RBI single.

Haylee Hemmert led the Saints, batting 3-for-3 with a double and an RBI single. Kassandra Orozco finished the game 2-for-3, providing a double and three RBIs.

Presentation’s Kayla Reynolds (1-0) earned the win after scattering seven hits in seven innings. She struck out four batters, walked five and allowed three runs.

Waldorf senior Maggie Hawley (0-1) took the loss, surrendering five runs (three earned) on seven hits and one walk in six innings.

Hemmert delivered an RBI single for the Saints in the third inning. Orozco knocked in two more runs with a double to push Presentation to a 3-0 lead.

In the fifth, the Saints received a run-scoring single from Orozco and an RBI double from Shelby Anderson.

Junior Trista Bures put the Warriors on the scoreboard in the seventh by singling in a run. Senior Andrea Hartmann added an RBI sacrifice fly and Murphy contributed a run-scoring single on the next at-bat to trim Presentation’s lead to 5-3. Waldorf’s two-out rally ended as the game came to a finish on a double play.

Murphy smashed a solo homer in a 2-for-4 performance against Dakota Wesleyan. Senior Maggie Eden batted 1-for-3 with a two-run single.

Dakota Wesleyan’s Nicole Stark went 4-for-4 with three doubles and an RBI single. Vanessa Mendez drove in four runs and finished the game 2-for-2 at the plate. The Tigers received a double and two RBIs from Hailey Unger, who finished 2-for-3.

Kelly Taylor started on the mound for Dakota Wesleyan and gave up four runs off three hits, notched two strikeouts and issued three walks in two and one-third innings. Lorissa Loeppky (1-0) earned the win, striking out four batters and allowing one unearned run on four hits in four and two-thirds innings.

Hartmann (0-1) finished with two strikeouts and two walks while giving up seven runs (six earned) on six hits in five and two-thirds innings. Junior Ashton May pitched the final one-third inning and yielded four runs off four hits.

Unger put the Tigers on the board in the bottom of the first with an RBI double.

Murphy tied the game, leading off the second with a solo blast. The Warriors took the lead when Bures brought in Eden with a sacrifice fly.

The Warriors pulled ahead 4-1 in the third as Eden ripped a two-run single. Dakota Wesleyan responded in the bottom half of the inning, gaining a 5-4 advantage behind three hits and an error.

Dakota Wesleyan stringed together six runs in the sixth to take an 11-4 lead. Stark and Unger each provided RBI singles. Mendez connected on a bases-loaded double to drive in two more runs and Meghan Bovee slapped a two-run single during the next at-bat.

Waldorf sophomore Talon Welk contributed an RBI single in the seventh.

Abrahamson, sophomores Hattie Hupke and Kaylie Brindley each tallied hits against Jamestown. Brindley drove in the lone run for the Warriors with a fifth-inning single.

Autumn Wang, Hanna Dunnigan and Rylee Perez turned in 2-for-4 performances for the Jimmies.

Dunnigan (1-1) earned the win, tossing three-hitter and fanning 10 batters. She allowed one run on three hits and gave up two walks out in seven innings.

Brindley (0-1) notched three strikeouts, issued a walk and relinquished six runs on 10 hits in seven innings.

Dunnigan drove in a run on a groundout in the top of the first inning and Wang belted an RBI single to give Jamestown an early 2-0 lead.

Brittany Rheault added a run-scoring single for the Jimmines in the second.

Sydney Greenlund singled in another run in the third as Jamestown built a 4-0 advantage.

Emily Newman smacked an RBI double in the fourth, putting the Jimmies ahead by five runs.

Brindley singled in the fifth to bring home Eden.

Wang connected on an RBI single in the seventh.

The Warriors displayed competitiveness in the opening-day games and are encouraged moving ahead.

“We showed fight in some tough situations, but we were unable to hold the momentum long enough to pull off a win,” Determan said.

Waldorf finishes the Aberdeen Dome Tournament with three games on Sunday. The Warriors face Dakota Wesleyan at 9 a.m., Jamestown at 11 a.m. and NCAA Division II’s University of Minnesota-Crookston (0-2) at 1 p.m.