Softball team fails to execute

DEFEAT: UND falls to NDSU in Saturday’s doubleheader.

The North Dakota softball team cheers from the dugout in a tough battle Saturday. Photo by Caitlin Duggan.

It was a brisk 66 degrees when the UND softball team took the field against North Dakota State University on Saturday afternoon at Apollo Field in a difficult doubleheader.

The teams faced off in a doubleheader packed with action and close calls, that ended in scores of 2-0 and 12-1 in favor of NDSU.

Freshman pitcher Kaylin Vandomelen started off the first game strong for UND with one strikeout and caused the other batters to pop out. However, UND also started off slow offensively without a hit in the first inning.

The second inning was plagued by UND errors, including two consecutive overthrows that allowed the runner to proceed to third base. The team was able to hold the runner at third and escape the inning 0-0.

In the third inning, a string of NDSU hits scored one run. UND, on the other hand, still struggled to find the gaps in the field. Vandomelen and the UND defense were able to shut down the NDSU offense and keep it from scoring as the game continued.

The intensity of the game picked up when UND began to increase its hits. Yet, the execution aspect was lacking, and the team left runners on base in both innings.

In the top of the seventh inning, NDSU’s Logan Moreland hit a solo home run over the centerfield fence and extended NDSU’s lead to 2-0. UND fought hard during its last at-bats in attempt to make a last minute comeback.

Senior Amanda Johnson started with a double off of the centerfield fence. Her teammates all followed with hits, but the NDSU defense did not let them fall, resulting in a 2-0 deficit for North Dakota.

Second Chance

The Green and White were defeated, but a doubleheader gave them another chance at a win.

A quick break, and the rivals were back at it for the second game of the afternoon — both teams significantly changing up the lineup.

One of the changes included Megan Hedstrom replacing pitcher Kaylin Vandomelen for the Green and White.

The top of the first inning was rough for the UND defense as NDSU had multiple hits and stolen bases, taking an early lead 3-0.

UND’s Mazi Joslin was walked in the first inning, and the following batter hit a grounder to shortstop. NDSU made a double play with a questionable call at first base that caused head coach, Eric Oakley to voice his disagreement to the umpire.

In the second and third innings NDSU manufactured two more runs. The UND batters seemed to be struggling to hit off of sophomore pitcher Tabby Bayer as her ability to throw a deceptive riseball caused UND batters to hit the bottom of the ball and pop out.

UND finally put a run on the board in the fourth inning. A few singles and a double off the centerfield wall by Kim Granata drove in the run. When attempting to score a second run, a UND player was called out on a play at home plate, once again causing controversy between Oakley and the umpires.

After the fifth inning, NDSU starting pulling away with the lead. Two more home runs were hit by NDSU batters, and it racked up the score to 12-1 as the final.

UND seemed to lose focus and make more errors in the second game. Despite the score, the two teams seemed well matched.

“Knowing how much talent is on this team, it is going to be up to us to work towards not letting us beat ourselves with errors,” sophomore Megan Keegan said.

The talent is there, the execution is the next step.

“We know we are just as good as any other team,” Keegan said. “We all just need to believe in it.”

UND’s next game is Sunday, Sept. 22 at 11:00 a.m. at Apollo Field against Minnesota Crookston.

Allison Moore is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at