High School Softball

Brookings Bobcats look to learn from first loss to Washington

Team takes a lot away from Saturday's 13-5 loss to Warriors


BROOKINGS — The Brookings Bobcats suffered their first loss of the season, falling to Sioux Falls Washington 13-5. But sitting with a 3-1 record after four games, the Bobcats are focused on using it as a learning experience heading into a busy schedule next week.

“I think it’s good for us to have these type of games,” Brookings head coach Emma Hardin said. “It showed what we needed to work on and showed us what we can get better at so we can play at a high level.”

The Warriors took the lead in the top of the second inning when Madelyn Mescher drew a one-out walk and a pitch from Tess Burns hit Madelyn Eggebraaten. Bella Sporrer cashed in in the next at-bat to give Washington a 1-0 lead.

The Warriors added to their advantage when Ava Brink led off the top of the third inning before advancing to third base on an error and scoring on Tierney Schramm’s one-out single to make it 2-0.

While the Bobcats were in an early hole, Morgan Norgaard cut the lead in half with a solo home run in the bottom of the third inning. The homer was part of a fast start for Norgaard which continued after going 1-for-2 with the homer and a pair of walks on Saturday.

“Her mindset helps her be ready at the plate,” Hardin said. “No matter what position we put her in the field, she’s ready to go. She’s been like our Energizer bunny and she’s upbeat and she’s fun. She gets a team going and I think a lot of her teammates look to her to see if they’re doing the right thing because everyone else wants to do the right thing for the team.”

Norgaard’s homer provided a brief spot for the Bobcats but their defensive struggles showed up in the top of the fourth inning. Sporrer and Isabel Carda led off the fourth with back-to-back singles before Brink drove everyone home with a one-out, three run home run to put Washington up 5-1.

The rally continued as Emily Akkerman and Schramm drew walks and Tajsia Herron singled to load the braces. Mescher rove in a run with a single and a second run scored on a fielder’s choice to make it a 7-1 game after four innings.

Washington added another run on a Schramm single in the top of the fifth inning and an RBI doubles by Carda Herron, a two-run error by Keisha Cushing and an RBI single by Brink helped Washington expand the lead to 13-1.

Brookings rallied in the bottom of the sixth beginning with a Norgaard walk and a double by Kylie Moe and a two-run single by Tess Burns helped Brookings climb within 13-4. The Bobcats added another run on an error by Carda in the bottom of the seventh inning, but the deficit was too big of a hole to climb out of.

Burns threw five innings in the circle, allowing 10 runs (eight earned) on 11 hits and five walks with two strikeouts. Moe pitched in relief allowing three unearned runs on three hits and two strikeouts over the final two innings.

Layla Jacobsma went 2-for-3 while Twedt and Kate Jewett each had singles. Cushing and Norgaard each had a stolen base.

While the loss was disappointing, the Bobcats’ positive attitude remains as they head into a busy week with three games beginning with a trip to Brandon Valley on Monday evening.

“I told the girls that we’ve got to use this and keep rolling,” Hardin said. “[We need to] use the pieces that we took away from today and carry it to Monday but also take those things that we learned and be ready to go on Monday.”

Monday’s game with the Lynx will start at 6 p.m.