Softball splits series with South Dakota State

The UND softball team had reason to celebrate as No. 15 Taylor Hansen and No. 9 Emily Bell were key in the Hawks’ victory over South Dakota State. Photo by Nick Nelson/ The Dakota Student

UND beats Jackrabbits 6-3 in game one of doubleheader, but cannot rally in game two.

Playing the first doubleheader at home, the Fighting Hawks’ softball team found themselves on top of their game as they snagged a 6-3 win on Tuesday. Unfortunately, the team ran out of steam and the Hawks found themselves in a deficit that they were unable to crawl back from. UND lost 5-3 and split the series with the South Dakota State Jackrabbits.

Game one had the Jackrabbits playing a game of catch up as the Fighting Hawks were able to get ahead 1-0 early on a Megan Keegan home run. The Jackrabbits were able to tie the game up at 1-1

After the Jackrabbits tied the game in the top of the fourth, Emily Bell hit for an RBI single to allow Natalie Gerber to score and bring UND back in front 2-1.

The fifth inning brought the most excitement for SDSU as the Jackrabbits took a brief lead after a two-run homer helped them move the score to 3-2.

Remaining focused, the Fighting Hawks took back their lead for the last time in the bottom of the fifth, scoring four runs on four hits and an SDSU error.

With the fire still lit, Kaylin VanDomelen showed that she is a threat on the mound and at bat. For her 20th start of the sesaon, the UND redshirt sophomore pitched a complete game, striking out nine of the 28 batters and allowed three earned runs. She also went 1-for-3 and drove in a run and two RBIs.

Pitcher Hannah Bergh was not granted that same fate though, in the second game as she, along with UND, was handed the loss on Tuesday. Bergh allowed three runs on eight hits and reliever Kyra Lenzi sealed the deal allowing an additional two runs on three hits.

The Jackrabbits gained their large lead in the sixth inning of game two with three runs for a 5-0 lead. It wasn’t over yet, as UND started warming up on the bats.  The Hawks first run came in at the bottom of the 6th on an error by SDSU first basemen, and Nicole Babrowski ran home  from third base.

Shelby Hard followed up by hitting a double of her own that brought Bell home and the Hawks within three runs.

Pinch hitter Mary Martin laid out the third-straight hit for UND, moving Hard to third. SDSU began to slip, with two outs, Jackrabbits pitcher Bryana Clark walked Babrowski to load the bases and bring VanDomelen up to the plate to possibly end the game. VanDomelen was able to bring UND within two and keep the bases stills loaded. Clark was able to retire Megan Keegan to get the final out and split the series against the Jackrabbits.

With an impressive performance, VanDomelen recorded a .571 batting average with four hits and three RBI’s. Other notable performances included Martin who went 2-for-4, and Bell, who went 2-for-6 on the day.

The Hawks now sit at an 11-23 record this season, going 1-2 at home at the Apollo Sports Complex.

UND heads back on the road this weekend and resumes conference play, taking on Portland State in a three game series. The series starts today, with game one scheduled to begin at 3 p.m.

Allyson Bento is a sports writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at [email protected]