5/16/2019 1:50:00 PM Wildcats jam pack 10 games into five days, going 6-4
Between Thursday, May 9 and Tuesday, May 14, the Wildcats played 10 softball games and went a respectable 6-4 against mostly tough competition.
Chisago Lakes 9, Cambridge-Isanti 0 Chisago Lakes 11, Cambridge-Isanti 1 (5 innings) The Wildcats outscored the Cambridge-Isanti Bluejackets 20-1 as they swept a doubleheader at Cambridge last Thursday, May 9.
In the first game, Trinity Junker and Ashely Mendell combined to throw a no-hitter and Kaitlyn Istvanovich homered, doubled and drove in four runs to lead the Wildcats to a 9-0 win. Junker started and went four innings. She walked one and struck out nine. Mendell went three innings in relief, walked none and struck out three. Istvanovich’s three-run blast in the third inning made the score 4-0. In the fourth, Alison Bergerson singled in two runs and Istvanovich drove in another one with a double, and the Wildcats cruised to an easy win.
In game two, the Wildcats scored five runs in the first and added six more in the third to beat the Bluejackets 11-1 in a game shortened to five innings because of the 10-run rule. Mendell went the distance, allowing one earned run on just two hits. She walked one and struck out six. Meanwhile, the Wildcat bats were busy as they pounded out 13 hits. Istvanovich and Mendell each doubled in two runs in the first inning and the Wildcats led 5-0 after one. In the third, Natalie Thornburg and Alison Bergerson each doubled in two runs and Istvanovich single in another one.
Chisago Lakes 1, Cloquet 0 Trinity Junker did it all against the Cloquet Lumberjacks. In seven innings of pitching, she allowed no runs on seven hits, walked none and struck out ten. She singled in the first inning to drive in Natalie Thornburg with the game’s only run. Cloquet’s only big scoring threat came in the first inning, when they loaded the bases with two outs. But Junker struck out the next batter to slam the door on that potential rally. The game was a home game for Cloquet, played at Princeton on Friday, May 10.
Princeton 3, Chisago Lakes 0 The Wildcats may have run out of a bit of steam playing their fourth game in two days. After the Cloquet game, the Wildcats took on the Princeton Tigers at Princeton. Princeton scored one run in the first inning and added two unearned runs in the third, shutting out the Wildcats 3-0. Junker started, but lasted just 2.2 innings. She gave up three runs (just one of them earned) on three hits, walked three and struck out two. Ashley Mendell pitched the last 3.1 innings and allowed no runs on two hits, walked one and struck out three. A first inning double by Alison Bergerson and a seventh-inning single by Jessica Bergerson were the only two hits for the Wildcats. The Wildcats never had more than one runner on base in any inning.
Becker 7, Chisago Lakes 0 The Wildcats suffered their biggest loss of the season against the Becker Bulldogs, losing 7-0 at home on Saturday, May 11. In seven innings, Trinity Junker gave up seven runs on seven hits, walked four and struck out nine. Junker was bitten by the home run bug in this one. Three Bulldogs knocked it out of the park, accounting for five of their seven runs. Junker had two of the Wildcats’ five hits and Jessica Bergerson had the Wildcats’ only extra base hit, a leadoff double in the sixth inning.
Hermantown 5, Chisago Lakes 2 Hermantown scored twice in the sixth and twice in the seventh and went on to beat the Wildcats 5-2 in the second game of the day at Chisago Lakes. Ashley Mendell started and went the distance for the Wildcats, allowing five runs (three earned) on seven hits. She didn’t walk anyone and struck out 13.
Hannah Mikalik hit a solo home run with two outs in the top of the first to give the Hawks a 1-0 lead. With the Hawks still leading 1-0 in the top of the sixth, they loaded the bases with no outs on a single, an error by Mendell and a hit batter. Mendell struck out the next batter for the first out. The next batter grounded back to Mendell, who threw home for the second out. It looked the Wildcats might get out of the inning with no damage. But Lauren Smith singled to drive in two runs and increased the Hermantown lead to 3-0. Alison Bergerson singled to lead off the bottom of the sixth. One out later, Kaitlyn Istvanovich and Trinity Junker each doubled in a run, cutting the Hawks’ lead to 3-2. But a flyout and a groundout ended the rally. The Hawks added two more in the top of the seventh. After a leadoff single, Mendell struck out the next batter and the batter after that grounded out. But Savanna Erickson doubled in one run and Mikalik followed with a run-scoring single to make it 5-2. With one out in the bottom of the seventh, Paige Berquist singled and Savanna Harrington reached on an error to put runners on second and third. But Alison Bergerson and Natalie Thornburg struck out to end the game.
Softball Stuff The Section 7AAA playoffs start with play-in games next Wednesday, May 22, but the Wildcats will likely have a bye until the next round of games on Saturday, May 25. We will have a softball section preview in next week’s Chisago County Press.