Tigers halfway to third unbeaten MBC titleThe quest for a third straight undefeated Middle Border Conference championship has reached the halfway point for the New Richmond softball team.
By: Dave Newman, New Richmond News
The quest for a third straight undefeated Middle Border Conference championship has reached the halfway point for the New Richmond softball team.
The Tigers climbed to 7-0 in the MBC in their stiffest test thus far in the 2008 season. The Tigers went to Baldwin-Woodville and scored a 6-4 win over the Blackhawks.
This game featured two of the top pitchers in the MBC. New Richmond pitcher Nikki Singerhouse hasn’t lost a game since her freshman season. B-W pitcher Tara Kimberly may be the second best pitcher in the conference.
“The Baldwin pitcher really had good command of her fastball and threw a nice changeup,” said Tiger coach Jim McCullum.
Singerhouse was as overpowering as always, limiting the Blackhawks to three hits and two earned runs.
The outcome of Monday’s game was in question until the final out. The Tigers led 3-2 going into the seventh inning. In an effort to start a spark in the offense, McCullum had his first three hitters of the seventh all attempt to slap hit. All three, Kristy Martinson, Sarah Munson and Paige Spaulding, slapped the ball for singles. That ignited a three-run rally.
The Tigers would need those runs when they made some rare defensive mistakes that helped B-W score twice in the bottom of the seventh. The Tigers were able to end the game when third baseman Libby Jensen was able to snag a hot line drive for the final out.
The Martinson sisters led the Tiger offense in this game. Kristy Martinson may have played her best overall game, going 3-3 at the plate and making several nice plays at second base. Alyssa Martinson, went 2-4 at the plate, including a triple.
McCullum said one of the areas where the Tigers have improved most this season is in their infield defense. Jensen, Singerhouse and catcher Hannah Bygd returned to their roles in the infield. Kristy Martinson at second base, Ashley Stoffel at first base and Dani Lagerstrom at shortstop are new starters this season and all three have quickly adapted to their new assignments.
The Tigers had games last Thursday and Friday washed away by the weather. Thursday’s game with Osceola was moved to May 13, while the St. Croix Falls game likely won’t be made up.
This Thursday the Tigers play at home against Durand. On Saturday the Tigers are scheduled to play in a tournament at Robbinsdale Cooper.
Next Monday the Tigers and Prescott are scheduled to play a double-header in New Richmond. The Tigers will be playing at Somerset next Tuesday.