During its six game win streak, the North Dakota State’s softball team jumped out to early leads. Wednesday, the exact opposite happened, as the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks got the lead early at the Ellig Sports Complex to defeat the Bison 4-1.
The Hawks jumped all over the Bison’s starting pitcher Jacquelyn Sertic, with two runs on three hits in the first and another run in the second.
The three-run lead was all the Hawk’s starting pitcher Kaylin VanDomelen needed. VanDomelen kept the Bison from really threatening, giving up only six hits and walked another two while striking out five. When the Bison did get into scoring position, she worked out of it.
In the third inning, the Bison had the bases loaded with one out, but Julia Luciano drove one right into the glove of Emily Bell at first base, who then beat Alyssa Reina back to the bag to get out of the jam.
That was the course of the day, with VanDomelen getting her defense behind her to get the job done. The Bison’s bats failed to find any heat, and almost everything they hit seemed to fall right to a Hawk.
The job for the Bison got harder in the fifth inning, when Bell hit a solo home run to left field off of Bison reliever Kaitlyn Leddy. Leddy came on after Sertic walked the leadoff hitter in the third inning.
The Bison finally got going in the final inning, when Maritza Lopez-Portillo hit a solo shot of her own to give the Bison a run on the scoreboard. But it would not be enough, as the game would end with the final score 4-1.
The Bison were led by two hits apiece by Logan Moreland and Katie Shoultz. Moreland also stole three bases on the afternoon. She is still yet to be caught stealing on 23 attempts this season.
It will be a learning lesson for Bison, as coach Darren Mueller said after the game.
“There have been some games where we have said that we have to learn this, do this, and we are still making some of those same mistakes,” Mueller said.
The win improves the Fighting Hawks to 11-25 overall, and also snaps a losing streak in the series with the Bison that dates back to 1997. It was the first time that the two teams faced each other since 2004.
Sertic picked up the loss (17-6) as the Bison dropped to 24-13.