FAIRMONT - Fairmont softball mentor Terry Ehlert must have had his players eat their Wheaties on Saturday morning before venturing to Cardinal Park for a round-robin tournament.
Ehlert's Cardinals flexed their collective muscles to pound out a staggering 47 hits, including 16 for extra bases, to amass 48 runs to post a 2-1 record en route to a second-place finish at the four-team Cardinal Invitational in Fairmont.
"I really don't know where the extra power came from today, but I'll take it," a grinning Ehlert said in reference to his batting order's eight doubles, seven triples and one home run during the productive three-game span.
CAN’T GET A GRIP — Fairmont runner Allison Moeller slides safely into home as Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial catcher Allie Wittrock cannot get a grip on the softball during first-round Cardinal Invitational action Saturday at Cardinal Park in Fairmont. Fairmont’s on-deck batter Tieryn Arens and home plate umpire Matt Prunty observe the play. (Photo by Leanna Becker)
Cleanup batter Kristen Campe went 2-for-4 with a game-best four RBIs to help engineer Fairmont's opening 14-2 triumph over Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial.
Ahead 5-1, the Cardinals sent 14 players to the batter's box to erupt for nine runs during the top of the seventh. Campe delivered a two-run single during the outburst, Tieryn Arens smacked a two-run triple, while Aly Eversman smashed an RBI triple to highlight the late hitting barrage.
Courtney Guetter, Courtney Whitmore, Mariah Thate and Mikayla Krzywicki matched Campe with two hits apiece during Game 1, Allison Moeller tripled and Micaela Gochanour doubled. Thate and Moeller drove in two runs each, while Whitmore and Krzywicki added one RBI each.
Krzywicki also handled the pitching duties in the opener, allowing two runs - both unearned - on only two hits in seven innings of work to earn the complete-game victory. Krzywicki struck out five and issued only one walk.
Fairmont then generated a season-high, single-game total of 20 hits during second-round action, but ironically, lost a 19-15 slugfest with the Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted Lakers.
Leadoff batter Hatti Heber and No. 3 hitter Cozette Eastman each went 5-for-5 to top the Lakers' 22-hit attack. Heber tripled, drove in two runs and scored four times, while Eastman collected a game-high five RBIs and crossed the plate three times.
Gochanour went 4-for-6 with a double, three RBIs and four runs scored to serve as the Cardinals' Game 2 catalyst.
Gochanour, however, was not alone as Guetter went 3-for-6 and scored four runs, while Whitmore went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBIs. Thate joined the three-hit parade by going 3-for-5 with a triple and two RBIs.
Campe went 2-for-2 with three walks, a triple, a sacrifice fly and three RBIs, while Moeller drove in two runs with two hits.
Fairmont then rallied from an early 5-2 deficit to the Martin Luther/Granada-Huntley-East Chain Knights in third-round action to post an eventual 19-6, five-inning victory.
The Cardinals sent 15 batters to the plate during the bottom of the third, combining six hits - including two triples and a homer - with seven walks to generate 12 runs.
Eversman went 3-for-3 with a pair of doubles and a triple to drive in two runs to pace Fairmont's 13-hit effort, while the trio of Whitmore, Campe and Moeller combined equally for six hits and six RBIs as Campe doubled.
Thate smacked a two-run inside-the-park homer during the third, Krzywicki tripled and Gochanour doubled during the comeback performance.
Eversman gave up six runs on five hits, walked three and struck out three in four frames to net the Game 3 victory. Taylor Nuss struck out one and allowed two hits in one inning of relief.
Kristi Oberdieck went 2-for-2 with a walk, a double, two runs scored and two RBIs to top the Knights' effort, while Amber Schulz singled home a run during a three-run first frame and also scored a run.
Effie Bentz went 1-for-2 with a walk and crossed the plate twice for ML/GHEC, while teammates Amanda Schuder, Payton Becker and Shelby Quinn each added hits.
Campe finished the three-game span with an incredible nine RBIs behind a 6-for-9 hitting clip for the Cardinals, while Whitmore went 7-for-12 with six RBIs. Thate was 6-for-12 with six RBIs, Moeller went 5-for-14 with six RBIs, while Gochanour was 6-for-12 with five RBIs and a team-leading nine runs scored. Guetter went 5-for-10 with six runs scored in only two games.
Fairmont (6-8) plays host to St. Peter at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, while Martin Luther/GHEC hits the road to Mankato Loyola on Tuesday.
FHS 302 000 9 - 14 14 5
LCWM 000 100 1 - 2 2 4
Mikayla Krzywicki (WP) and Tieryn Arens. Bailey Rustman (LP) and Allie Wittrock.
LOB-FHS 8, LCWM 7. 2B-Micaela Gochanour (F). 3B-Allison Moeller (F), Arens (F), Aly Eversman (F). SF-Mariah Thate (F).
FHS 160 402 2 - 15 20 5
HLWW 340 804 x - 19 22 3
Taylor Schultze (LP), Eversman (3), Krzywicki (5) and Arens. Sam Loebertmann (WP) and Sam Holte.
LOB-FHS 13, HLWW 7. 2B-Whitmore (F) 2, Gochanour (F). 3B-Kristen Campe (F), Thate (F), Hatti Heber (HLWW), Loebertmann (HLWW). SF-Campe (F).
MLGHC 32 0 10 - 6 7 2
FHS 12(12) 4x - 19 13 2
Samantha Meade (LP), Amber Schulz (3) and Schulz, Effie Bentz (3). Aly Eversman (WP), Taylor Nuss (5) and Kaylee Sauck, Arens (3).
LOB-FHS 4, MLGHEC 3. 2B-Eversman (F) 2, Gochanour (F), Campe (F), Kristi Oberdieck (MLGHEC). 3B-Eversman (F), Krzywicki (F). HR-Thate (F).