ROSEMOUNT, MN - Bay College Softball (8-3) dropped a tough decision to the Dawson Community College Buccaneers (13-2) by a final of 5-4 in their opening game of the Region 13 Early Bird Tournament hosted by Dakota County Technical College.
Dawson would get on the board first, drawing a walk to lead off the game. After a stolen base and a wild pitch, the Buccaneers would plate the first run of the game with a ground out. Bay would answer back in the bottom half of the second. After Richelle Vandeville (FR, Rapid River, MI) singled to lead off the inning, they would get a two-out single up the middle from Beth Gannigan (FR, Coleman, WI) to tie the score. Maddy Griffin (FR, Escanaba, MI) followed that up with a liner to left that fell for a single, then would get past the fielder and bring the runner all the way around to score from first. Emily Bruntjens (SO, Escanaba, MI) would lay down a bunt for a perfect infield single, which would also bring Griffin home, giving the Norse a 3-1 lead in the early going.
The Buccaneers would steal a run back in the top of the third, taking advantage of two Norse errors. Bay would avoid big trouble, leaving runners on second and third, but would not be able to hold on to the lead in the fourth. After being hit by a pitch, Dawson's April Davis (FR, Helena, MT) would steal second and advance to third on an error. A sacrifice fly sent her to the plate, tying the game.
The Norse caught a break of their own in the fifth as Bruntjens would reach on a one-out error. After stealing second and setting herself up in scoring position, Kaitlyn Hardwick (FR, Gladstone, MI) drove her in with a fly ball double to right, reclaiming the lead for the Norse. The lead would be short-lived however, as Ashlyn Tingey (FR, Brigham City, UT) drove a ball over the fence left tying the game with a solo homerun. Davis would hurt the Norse a second time, singling to center with one out, then stealing second. After advancing to third on a passed ball, she would score on Alison Ellerston's (FR, Brigham City, UT) double to center. Bay would load the bases with two outs in the sixth, and draw a one-out walk in the seventh, but both rallies would be cut short.
Shelby Martin (FR, Helena, MT) would pick up the win for her effort. She pitched all seven innings, striking out 12, while giving up seven hits and two walks. Just one of her four runs were earned. Lexi Winling (FR, Gladstone, MI) took the loss for the Norse, also going seven innings and giving up seven hits and three walks. She struck out four batters. Three of her five runs were earned.
Hadley Bennett (FR, Warren, UT) ended the game two for four with an RBI. Tingey was two for three, with a walk, a run scored, and an RBI from that big home run. No Bay hitters were able to collect multiple hits in the game.
The Norse will look to bounce back tomorrow as they take on Lake Region State at 11 am. They then get a rematch with this Dawson team at 1 pm. Both of those games will take place in Rosemount, MN.