The Waterville-Elysian-Morristown Buccaneers scored a hard fought 6-5 win Monday night over the Kenyon-Wanamingo Knights in first round West Subsection 1A fastpitch softball.

An excellent crowd in Waterville enjoyed not needing to wear blankets and gloves while sitting in the sunshine,

Both teams came into the game with 8 wins.  The Buccaneers were the #4 seed, Knights #5 seed in the 8 team Subsection.

The first round is do or die so the loss ended K-W's season while WEM now enters double elimination status.

Buccaneers senior pitcher Gloria Cortez did what she always does.  Throw strikes.  Cortez did not walk a single batter.  She has allowed one walk all season now in 92 and 2/3 innings pitched.

Kenyon-Wanamingo opened the game with 3 runs in the top of the first inning.  With one out freshman Vanessa Bartel smacked a single to left on a 2-2 count.  Junior Emma Paulson hit a sharp grounder back to the pitcher that Cortez couldn't handle.  Sophmore pitcher Josie Flom hammered a ball deep in the shortstop hole that scored a run after the throw went wide of first.

A strikeout was followed by a two run single by sophmore Rachel Ryan.  Thanks to a pair of errors and 3 hits the Knights had the lead.

In the bottom of the first inning WEM had runners at second and third with one out but Flom was able to get out of the inning with no runs scored.

The Buccaneers decided to uncork their small ball game in the second inning and erupted for 4 runs.

Designated player  junior Daelyn Judd drew her second walk of the season to start the inning after a 7 pitch at bat.  Classmate Jenessa Baumgarten laid down a perfect bunt and the Buccaneers were in business.

Following a strikeout #9 hitter,  sophmore Alayna Atherton was pinch hit for by junior Jenae Androli who executed another perfect bunt resulting in a couple runs scoring.

Lead-off hitter Jordan Green hit a infield grounder and gained first base when the fielder attempted to get a out recorded at second base and the runner was called safe.

Senior Rylee Pelant hit a high fly to center that scored a run to tie the game and Green advanced to third base and scored the fourth run of the inning on a passed ball during a walk issued to junior catcher Emma Woratschka.

Eight batters stood at the plate and Waterville-Elysian-Morristown never trailed after that.

The Knights have no seniors on their team. Buccaneers two seniors.

Cortez allowed one first batter in an inning to reach base.  K-W sophmore shortstop Ivette Mendoza hammered a two out double on a 0-1 count in the second inning which ended in a pop out.

Following a 3 pitch top of the third inning for Cortez, Flom retired the side on 11 pitches with a pair of strikeouts in the bottom of the inning.

Cortez got two outs before a single and error placed junior Lydia Schaefer at second base to snap six straight retired K-W batters.

Waterville-Elysian-Morristown added a run in the fifth when the inning started with a throwing error on a grounder hit by Pelant.  Woratschka executed a sacrifice to advance Pelant to second.  She would go to third on a groundout to short for the second out.

Addyson Taylor clubbed a single to score Pelant.

The Buccaneers added another run in the sixth inning when Baumgarten opened the inning with a four pitch walk.  Second baseman sophmore Grace Baker bunted Baumbarten to second base.

Atherton returned to bat in the #9 spot and collected a RBI single that proved to be huge in the victory.

Kenyon-Wanamingo opened the top of the seventh with a groundout followed by Mendoza's third hit of the game, a single.  The second out was recorded advancing Mendoza to second base before Paulson stroked an RBI single.

Flom stepped to the plate and drilled a 1-2 pitch high off the fence to center just missing a game tying home run.  It was hit so hard Flom had to stop at second base.  The next batter hit a soft liner to short ending the game.

Flom threw 86 pitches in six innings with 56 strikes.  She struck out six, walked 3 and allowed 5 Buccaneers hits.

Cortez was incredibly efficient thanks in part to K-W swinging at a lot of first pitches.  Of course when a pitcher has one walk all year the tendency is to be aggressive at the plate.

I did a double-take when the game was over at the pitch count for the senior right handed thrower.  66 pitches, 56 strikes.  Two strikeouts, no walks, ten hits allowed.

Each team had 3 errors in my scorebook.

Kenyon-Wanamingo finished their season 8-9.  The 9-10 Waterville-Elysian-Morristown team plays Tuesday at 5:00 p.m. at #1 seed Hayfield.

The Vikings dispatched Janesville-Waldorph-Pemberton 8-0.

In other West Subsection action #2 seed Bethlehem Academy defeated Alden-Conger/Glenville-Emmons 8-2, $3 seed United South Central edged Goodhue 3-2.

So Tuesday the Cardinals host the Rebels while the Buccaneers are in Hayfield.

On the east side of Section 1A top seed Wabasha-Kellogg downed Schaeffer Academy 29-2.  #2 seed Southland bested Houston 10-4.  #3 seed Rushford-Peterson cruised 10-2 over Fillmore Central/Lanesboro and #4 seed Mabel-Canton rolled over Lyle-Pacelli 17-2.

In Section 1 Class 2A opening games:

West Subsection #1 seed Zumbrota-Mazeppa edged Triton 2-0, #5 seed Dover-Eyota defeated Grand Meadow-Leroy-Ostrander-Kingsland 5-1 in Spring Valley.  #2 seed Cannon Falls bested Rochester Lourdes 6-2 and #6 seed Pine Island upset #3 Blooming Prairie 13-3.

East Subsection top gun St. Charles blanked Lake City 6-0, #4 seed Plainview-Elgin-Millville out scored LaCrescent 13-5, #2 Chatfield over Lewiston-Altura 14-4 and #3 Cotter shut out Caledonia/Spring Grove 4-0.

Section 1 Class 3A playoffs open Tuesday with seven teams in the section it is double elimination from the beginning.  #6 seed Faribault travels to #3 Kasson-Mantorville for a 5:00 p.m. game.   #2 seed Byron hosts #7 Austin.

Top seed Winona receives a first round bye while #4 Red Wing has #5 Stewartville come to the Aces field.

Section 1 Class 4A is also double elimination all the way because of a eight team tournament.  Top seed Farmington has Rochester John Marshall come to Tigers country Tuesday at 5:00 p.m.  #5 Lakeville North is at #4 Northfield.  #2 Lakeville South hosts #7 Rochester Century and #3 Owatonna hosts #6 Rochester Mayo.

Section 2 Class 1A had some upsets in opening action.  They seed all the way through the section.  #1 NIcollet received a bye here are the other scores.

  • #2 New Ulm Cathedral 19 #15 Heron Lake-Okabena/Fulda 1
  • #8 Sleepy Eye 7  #9 Martin Luther/GHEC/Truman 4
  • #12 Madelia 12  #5 Cleveland 11
  • #7 Buffalo Lake-Hector/Stewart 9  #10 Mt. Lake Area/Comfrey 4
  • #6 Martin County West 12 #11 RRC/WWG  2
  • #4 Springfield 4  #13 Minnesota Valley Lutheran 0
  • #3 Sleepy Eye St. Mary's 15  #14 Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop 1

Section 2 Class 2A results from Monday. Seed entire section.

  • #1 New Ulm,  #2 LeSueur-Henderson received Byes
  • #9 Blue Earth Area 5  #8 Tru-City United 2
  • #7 Fairmont 4  #10 Waseca 0
  • #4 St, James Area 11 #13 Sibley East 0
  • #6 New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva 12  #11 St. Clair/Loyola 0
  • #5 Belle Plaine 9  #12 Maple River 0
  • #3 LCWM 10  #14 Medford 0

Section 2 Class 3A starts Thursday at Caswell Park in Mankato.  No seeds listed yet but Mankato West will be top team.

Section 2 Class 4A begins Tuesday, May 24, 2022 at Miller Park in Eden Prairie.  Here are the games.  It's double-elimination all the way.

  • #1 Chanhassen plays #8 Waconia
  • #5 Minnetonka vs. #4 Prior Lake
  • #3 Eden Prairie vs #6 Chaska
  • #2 Shakopee vs #7 Bloomington Jefferson

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