Neither game was exactly a pitcher’s duel but it didn’t matter for the Colfax softball team as they came away from St. Croix Central with a pair of softball wins in a make up double header May 12. After winning 9-6 in the first game, the Vikings exploded for a 17-11 win in the second game. They followed up the next day with a 13-10 win over Spring Valley in a game played on the Glenwood City field simply because the Cardinals were there for an earlier game and with all the rainouts this spring, the teams needed to get the game in. Playing another double header at home on Thursday, they were dealt a disappointing loss in the first game against Mondovi 6-5 but came back for an exciting 10-8 win in game two, then won another make up game the following day at home 5-4 over Boyceville.
St. Croix Central
Colfax was up 8-0 after the top of the first in game one in part by three hits from Mallie Doucette which included a home run and a double to bring in three runs. The Panthers clawed away however and came up with six runs in the next three innings before Hannah DeMoe gave the Vikings a little more cushion bringing in Taylor Shipman on a seventh inning base hit.
Shipman finished 3 for 3 at the plate while Doucette was 3 for 5 with three RBIs. Lakken Meredith picked up the win allowing eight hits with three strikeouts and five walks.
COLFAX 0 6 0 2 0 0 1 – 9
ST. CROIX CENTRAL 0 0 0 1 2 3 0 – 6
In the second game, the Vikings again took what looked like a huge lead at 9-3 as Kori Buchanan banged a double and her third home run of the season, but they gave the lead up when Central had a big eight run fifth inning. Colfax had enough fire in them to fight back with five runs in the bottom of the inning with Karina Wait slamming a triple for a 14-11 lead, and they tacked on three more for good measure in the sixth to hang on for the win.
Wait finished 3 for 3 with a pair of RBIs, Shipman was 3 for 4 and Buchanan knocked in four Vikings with a 2 for 5 performance. Meredith used her iron arm to pick up another win, giving up seven hits on one K and five walks.
“This was another wild double header, similar to the one we played at Elmwood,” coach Joe Doucette said. “We looked like we were in control in both games but had to fight hard to hold on for the wins.”
ST. CROIX CENTRAL
1 1 1 0 8 0 0 – 11
3 3 3 0 5 3 X – 17
It wasn’t another artistic win according to coach Doucette but the Vikings showed their resiliency again by coming back from a 5-1 deficit with three runs in the second and five in the third to take a 9-5 lead. Equality Wilson and Tiernee Knutson drew walks to start the third inning with Wait smacking a single followed by Buchanan’s double, Doucette’s single, Meredith’s double and another single by Emily Tuschl. The Cardinals knotted the score at 9-9 but Colfax came back again for three runs in the fifth on base hits from Meredith, Tuschl and Wilson then put a single run up in the sixth when Buchanan scored on a Tuschl basehit.
Knutson started on the mound but struggled to find the strike zone and gave way to Meredith who went 6 and 2/3 innings for the win, allowing eight hits with eight walks. Tuschl batted 3 for 5 with three RBIs, Buchanan finished 2 for 3 with three RBIs, Meredith was 3 for 5 and brought in a pair of runs, Doucette and Wilson both had a pair of hits and Wait came home three times.
“We made some key defensive plays and had a lot of big hits,” coach Doucette said. “We are winning a lot of high scoring games by finding holes with our hits.We haven’t gotten everyone to hit at the same time yet but one of these games we hope to get that done.”
2 3 0 3 1 0 1 – 10
1 3 5 0 3 1 X – 13
The Vikings took an early 5-0 lead after two innings with Doucette bringing in two runs on a pair of doubles while Wilson, Ottinger and Knutson all added an RBI each. The bats went quiet after that however, and the Buffaloes pecked away as they came up with a run in the third and four in the sixth on four hits to tie the score at 5-5. With two outs in the top of the seventh, they came up with what proved to be the winning run on a double and a throwing error by the Vikings. Colfax had a runner at first and second in their final at bat but couldn’t get them home with the tying and winning runs.
Doucette finished 2 for 4 with two RBIs while five Viking players all had one hit. Meredith pitched all seven innings and gave up 11 hits with four walks. The loss gave Colfax three in the conference and put them two games behind Elk Mound.
MONDOVI 0 0 1 0 0 4 1 – 6
COLFAX 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 – 5
The loss lit a fire under the Vikings, temporarily at least when, playing as the visitor on the scoreboard in game two, they started with four runs. But coach Doucette tried to give Meredith some rest on the mound, and started Buchanan who had trouble throwing strikes. Meredith came back after two batters but struggled as the Buffaloes came up with five runs themselves. Colfax battled back when Wait and Buchanan both singled in the second, Doucette doubled, Tuschl reached on an error, Shipman singled and Wilson reached on a fielder’s choice to give them the lead back at 7-5. Mondovi responded with three in the third and they were back up 8-7 with things not looking so good for the Vikings as they failed to score in the next three innings. But in the top of the sixth, Meredith led off with a single and promptly came home with the tying run on a two base smash by Tuschl. Shipman then sent a solid shot up the middle and coach Doucette had no intentions of stopping Tuschl as she beat the throw home for the go ahead run. The next three batters went out but Colfax now had a one run lead.
Mondovi came up with a two out double in the bottom of the inning but third baseman Knutson fielded a grounder and threw the runner out at first to end the inning. Colfax added an insurance run in the seventh on a Doucette base hit and an RBI double by Meredith and they simply needed three outs to earn the win. After the Buffaloes started the seventh with a single, Knutson took things into her own hands – or glove in this case – as she fielded three straight grounders, throwing two runners out at second and the final one at first to preserve the win.
Meredith and Doucette were both 4 for 5 at the plate while Wait and Shipman both had three hits. Wilson brought in three runs and Doucette came home three times. Meredith finished with the win giving up five hits with three Ks and two walks.
“The first game was a really tough loss for us,” coach Doucette said. “After being up 5-0 I thought we were in great shape. We hit a lot of balls hard after the good start but right at them. We gave them a run in the seventh to lose it after they scored those four in the inning before. In the second game we had another good start offensively but our biggest flaw is not making good plays defensively and we made too many errors. We now need some help to stay in the conference race after the first loss but I liked our resiliency as we came from behind in the second game,” he added.
COLFAX 4 3 0 0 0 2 1 – 10
MONDOVI 5 0 3 0 0 0 0 – 8
A Friday afternoon game with Colfax graduation starting at 7:00 that evening didn’t begin very well for Colfax as the Bulldogs loaded the bases with a single, an infield error and a walk before freshman Madysn Riek belted a grand slam off Meredith with two strikes on her for a 4-0 lead in the first inning. But Meredith and her teammates settled down defensively as they left Boyceville runners stranded at third base in the next three innings. After not having any luck scoring runs themselves, Meredith finally tagged a double to lead off the fourth, Tuschl walked and Wilson brought Meredith in on a single. DeMoe then pinched hit and brought in another run on a hot shot to second and the deficit was cut in half at 4-2.
Boyceville got another runner as far as second base in the fifth but Meredith whiffed the Bulldog batter on a change up for the third out. Colfax came back to knot things up as Buchanan sent a smash up the middle and Meredith followed with another double to deep right with Buchanan sliding under the tag at home. Meredith moved to third on the throw home then scored on Tuschl’s base hit.
The Bulldogs continued to threaten as they had yet another runner reach second in the sixth but a fly ball to center was snared by Wait to end the top of the inning. After Ottinger drew a lead off walk in the bottom of the inning, coach Doucette called for something he doesn’t do much of with all the big hitters he has, that being a bunt. With left hander Knutson up, she missed on a first attempt, but laid the next one down a foot in front of the plate to move Ottinger to second. Wait then did her job by bringing Ottinger in on a base hit for a 5-4 lead.
With four seniors on the team wanting to get ready for commencement, it looked like the Vikings were going to get the final three outs rather quickly when Meredith forced a pop up to the catcher and a ground ball to herself, but Riek made things interesting with a double to the left field fence. Then Knutson did what she has been doing a lot of as of late as she fielded another ground ball and threw to first for the final out.
Wait, Doucette, Meredith and Tuschl all banged a pair of hits in the game and Meredith, after pitching 42 innings during the week, picked up another win, scattering seven hits with three strikeouts and three free passes.
“I am proud of the way we kept our composure and battled back,” coach Doucette said. “Meredith really settled down as well as our defense after the first inning. We had trouble scoring on their pitcher the first time we lost to them 2-0 and we went 10 innings before we did score on her. We are mathematically still in the conference race but it will be hard for us to win it.”
BOYCEVILLE 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 – 4
COLFAX 0 0 0 2 2 1 X – 5