June 1, 2022 at 4:19 p.m.
Holdingford advances in Section 6AA tournament
A magical season full of comebacks, escapades and shattered records came to a harrowing end for the Sauk Centre Streeters softball team May 26.
The Holdingford Huskers used a four-error fourth inning from the Streeters to score six runs, running away with a big 9-3 victory and advancing in the Section 6AA tournament at Rivers Edge Park in Waite Park.
“It was disappointing,” said TJ Schmiesing, head coach. “The seniors were heartbroken. We wanted to challenge for the section title and it was hard at the end of the game, because we were all disappointed, but when we looked back, we looked at all of the accomplishments this year. Now that we’ve had time to reflect on it, we’re very proud of what they accomplished.”
Seniors Ella Froseth and Lisa Weir teamed up to give the sixth-seeded Streeters an early lead. Froseth tripled to lead off the second inning, while Weir singled her home the very next at-bat. Another Sauk Centre senior, Maddie Nelson, hit a sacrifice fly to drive home another runner.
Holdingford, however, stayed vigilant at the plate and scored twice in the bottom of the frame to tie things up. Then came the forgetable fourth, a violent storm of Husker hits and Streeter stumbles that led to Holdingford controlling a massive advantage.
“We just made uncharacteristic errors and they kept feeding off it,” Schmiesing said. “The more we gave them, the more they took.”
Sauk Centre never went away but did not find the clutch hits they have so often cashed in with. The Streeters advanced a runner to second in the fifth but did not score, and in the sixth inning, they only found one run out of a bases-loaded threat.
“That’s how softball and baseball goes,” Schmiesing said. “You’ll have those games where you don’t come up with great hits.”
In then end, the Streeters dropped their second game of the section tournament, ending their season earlier than they would have hoped. However, it was a fantastic final bow for the team’s seniors, who collected seven of the team’s 10 hits. Nelson, meanwhile, delivered six gritty innings on the mound after a historic pitching season.
“They’ve changed the mentality of the program from an okay softball team to a great softball team,” Schmiesing said. “They deserve that credit, because they put that time in and dedicated a lot of time to softball and getting better.”
As a team, Sauk Centre set seven new records. Lanna Walter set the new career home run record with nine dingers and swiped 23 bags in 2022, a new season best. Brenna Bick’s career batting average of .452 is a new Streeter high, while Nelson’s career marks of 109 hits and 43 wins and a 2022 total of 16 wins are unrivaled accolades in the annals of Sauk Centre softball. Additionally, the team’s 16 wins during the regular season is the highest ever.
“Years like this are important as far as building through the younger programs,” Schmiesing said. “We have a solid base coming back next year and I expect us to be very competitive in 2023.”