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June 21, 2018

5/31/2018 2:44:00 PM
Controversial homerun call helps knock out Wildcats

Section 7AAA Playoffs
Chisago Lakes 4, Hibbing 0
Junior Trinity Junker pitched the best game of her career against seventh-seeded Hibbing in the opening game of the Section 7AAA playoffs.  She struck out the first nine batters she faced and didn’t allow a baserunner till a one-out single in the top of the sixth inning.  For the game, she struck out 17 and allowed just two hits to lead the second-seeded Wildcats to a 4-0 win over the Bluejackets.  The game was played Wednesday, May 23 at Chisago Lakes High School.

Gina Virga led off the bottom of the first and later came around to score on a passed ball to give the Wildcats an early 1-0 lead.  In the third, Virga doubled with one out and scored on a two-out single by Alison Bergerson to make the score 2-0.  In the fifth, Desi Spicer walked with one out, followed by a bunt single from Virga.  The runners moved up on a passed ball and Spicer scored on a groundout by Hannah Sogard.  And in the sixth, singles by Jessica Bergerson, Kaitlyn Istvanovich and Jenna Carlson pushed across on more run to make it 4-0.

Wildcat head coach Brenda Carlson said “Trinity’s performance was pretty impressive.  Out of 21 outs, 17 of them were strikeouts.  The hits were a couple of ground balls that got through.  On offense, we hit the ball hard, but a lot of those hard-hit balls were right at the fielders.  That kept the score down.  We hit one ball so hard that their shortstop thought it had broken her hand.”
Cloquet 3, Chisago Lakes 2
“As they say, it’s a game of inches,” said Wildcat head coach Brenda Carlson.  Third-seeded Cloquet’s Kiana Bender hit a two-out homer in the top of the seventh to break a 2-2 tie and give the Lumberjacks a 3-2 win over the Wildcats in the second game of the section playoffs.  The homer was inches from being foul and just a few inches over the low fence in right field.

In the top of the first, the leadoff batter singled and scored on a Wildcat error to put the Lumberjacks up 1-0.  In the bottom of the inning, Hannah Sogard reached on a one-out two-base error and scored on a single by Jessica Bergerson to tie the game at 1-1.  In the fourth, Jessica Bergerson and Kaitlyn Istvanovich each singled and moved up on an error.  The next batter, Madison Thornburg, reached on an error.  Bergerson scored on the play, but Istvanovich was thrown out and the Wildcats led 2-1.

In the top of the fifth, Cloquet had a runner on second and two outs.  A fly ball looked like it would end the inning, but it was dropped and the runner from second scored to tie the game at 2-2.  Bender’s home run in the top of the seventh gave Cloquet the lead.  The Wildcats didn’t do much in the bottom of the inning, with two strikeouts sandwiched around a flyout.  The lost sent the Wildcats to a loser’s bracket elimination game against Princeton.

“That was a great game,” said Carlson.  “The home run was a heartbreaker.  We ran ourselves off of the bases a couple of times and had the costly errors that led to their first two runs.”
Chisago Lakes 11, Princeton 5
The Wildcat offense went nuts against eighth-seeded Princeton, pounding out 18 hits and beating the Tigers 11-5 in the third round of the Section 7AAA playoffs.  The loss knocked the Tigers out of the playoffs and sent the Wildcats on to the fourth round to face the Hermantown Hawks in another elimination game.  The game was played Saturday, May 26 at Chisago Lakes.

Jessica Bergerson led the way with three singles and five RBIs.  “Jessica was hot at the plate all day Saturday.  I think she had half of our RBIs.  And that’s why she’s in the number four spot.  She is the player who puts the ball in play and doesn’t strike out very often.  That gives us a fighting chance.”  Leadoff batter Gina Virga had four hits and drove in two.  Madison Thornburg had three hits, including a double, and drove in two.  Alison Bergerson and Kaitlyn Istvanovich had two hits apiece and Trinity Junker doubled to knock in two runs.  Junker started and went the first five and a third innings to pick up the win.  Seventh-grader Ashley Mandell pitched the final inning and two thirds for her first taste of the section playoffs.
Hermantown 6, Chisago Lakes 3
The fourth-seeded Hermantown Hawks scored three runs in the top of the second to take a 4-2 lead and added a couple of insurance runs in the top of the seventh to beat the Wildcat’s 6-3 in a Section 7AAA playoff game this past Tuesday, May 29.  The loss knocked the Wildcats out of the section playoffs.

After Hermantown took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first, the Wildcats responded with two runs of their own.  Gina Virga doubled to lead off the bottom of the first.  One out later, Alison Bergerson blasted a two-run homer to left-center to give the Wildcats a 2-1 lead.  But Hermantown came right back with three runs in the top of the second to go up 4-2.  With one out in the third inning, Hannah Sogard singled and Alison Bergerson walked.  The runners both moved up on a passed ball and Sogard scored on Jessica Bergerson’s groundout to cut the Hawk lead to 4-3.  The score stayed that way till the top of the seventh, when an error by the Wildcats led to two unearned runs to stretch the Hawk lead to 6-3.  In the bottom of the inning, Natalie Thornburg walked with one out.  But the next two batters grounded out, ending the Wildcats’ season. 

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