Owatonna, Blooming Prairie, NRHEG Softball Teams Stay Alive
A trio of local softball teams remained alive in playoff tournament action on Thursday. Two of them closed with wins, but all three are on life support and cannot afford another loss.
Owatonna beat Rochester Century 5-4 with a walk-off after dropping a 13-1 decision to New Prague in a twice-delayed section opener. Blooming Prairie lost 4-0 to WEM in the subsection championship but bounced back with a 2-0 victory over Hayfield to advance. NRHEG fell to Cannon Falls 2-1 in eight innings but moved to Saturday's elimination round.
In the Huskies games at Todd Park in Austin, No. 4 seed New Prague scored eight in the first inning and hit four home runs in the 13-1 win. The fifth-seed Huskies bounced back to win the next game 5-4 over Century. Coach Jeremy Moran said, "We were able to hand on and beat Rochester Century...Bats came alive a little with 12 hits, but only able to score five runs. (Mia) Hiber, (Anna) Vetsch and (Liv) Larson all had two hits and Patty Biegert had three."
After Century tied the game in the top of the seventh, Larson singled in the bottom of the inning. She was pushed to second with a sacrifice and got to third on a wild pitch. Jalisa Mathews drove Larson in with a ground out for the 5-4 walk-off win. The Huskies play No. 2 seed Rochester JM Friday at 4 pm at Todd Park with coverage on KRFO AM 1390 and the KRFO app.
Blooming Prairie softball lost 4-0 to top-seed WEM in the subsection final of Section 1A. Two of the runs were unearned. BP bounced back with their second playoff win over No. 2 seed Hayfield, 2-0 in eight innings. Marti Snider and Bobbie Bruns drove in the runs. Riauna pitched both games. The Blossoms advance to another elimination game on Tuesday, May 28 in Austin.
NRHEG softball lost 2-1 to Cannon Falls in eight innings. Panthers coach Wendy Schultz commented, "Unfortunately we let this one get away. Overall I thought we played good defense but had one costly miscue. Offensively Sidney (Schultz), Sophie (Stork) and Alexis (Anderson) hit well." NRHEG will play an elimination game against St. Clair/Loyola Saturday at Caswell Park in North Mankato.