Softball: Irish eliminated from sections by Hastings
Rosemount softball was eliminated from the section 3AAA playoffs Friday evening in the second round of consolation play. After falling to East Ridge in the opening round and routing Apple Valley in the first game of the consolation bracket, the Irish had an early lead over the Hastings Raiders but eventually fell 4-3. Rosemount finished the regular season 10-8 and went 1-2 in sections.
Rosemount lost to the East Ridge Raptors 6-1 last Tuesday evening in the four-versus-five matchup. East Ridge, the No. 4 seed, struck first scoring three runs in the bottom of the first to take the lead. The Irish responded in the top of the second with a run to make it 3-1, but that would be the only run of the game for Rosemount. The Raptors extended their lead to 6-1 in the bottom of the fifth and that was the final.
Head coach Tiffany Rose said that offense was the struggle for the Irish as they only managed to scrounge together a couple hits and left several runners on base throughout the game.
The Irish had zero struggles offensively on Thursday in the first round of consolation play. They hosted rival Apple Valley and hopped on them right away, scoring six runs in the bottom of the first and from there they never looked back. Two more in the second, one in the third and four in the fourth helped Rosemount put the 10-run rule in play and the final was 13-1.
Junior Hailey Sickler pitched all five innings, giving up just one run on three hits and two walks with four strikeouts. Offensively, the Irish exploded for 13 hits and 13 runs. Eight players had a hit in the game and four had multiple hits. Senior Danielle Sorenson, sophomore Ashley Reitsma, junior Kyla Johnson and junior Lauren Van Sickle all had two hits. Senior Bri Hollenbeck, senior Maria Back and junior Lauren Schroeder all had two RBI, while four players each scored at least two runs.
Heading into the second consolation round against the Hastings, Rose said that in order for her team to accomplish their goals they would have to play consistently and win out, which the Irish struggled to do during the regular season. However, their offensive woes resurfaced again as they scored just three runs, one in the first and two in the third.
Despite just the three runs, the Irish led much of the game. They led 1-0 after the first inning before Hastings tied it in the second. Rosemount retook the lead in the third on a two-run homerun and the score stayed 3-1 until the fourth, when the Raiders scored one run to cut the Irish lead to 3-2. Hastings then went ahead 4-3 in the sixth and that was the final.
While Rosemount will lose four key contributors after this season to graduation (Back, Bri Hollenbeck, Sorenson and Renee McKinnon), they were a young team this season and will return a vast majority of this year's team next year.