Norse Softball Team Drops Three To Delta Pioneers

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The Bay College Norse softball team dropped three of four games to the Delta College Pioneers out of the Saginaw area over the weekend.

The Norse lost two one-run heartbreakers on Friday, 11-10 and 4-3, before winning the Saturday opener, 5-2. The Pioneers went back downstate with a 13-3 win in the finale.

In Saturday's first game, one of the big highlights was a solo home run by first baseman Zoe Rumble. It was her first collegiate home run, and she also had a pair of singles for a three-hit game. Sierra Jones, the reigning MCCAA North Conference Player of the Week from the week before, continued her hot hitting with a pair of doubles.

Ava Mottin and Amara Martinez also had two hits apiece as the Norse outhit the Pioneers, 11-4.

In the circle, Allie Radcliffe pitched the whole way, allowing just four hits and both runs against her were unearned. Sami Fryzel took the loss for the Pioneers, giving up all eleven hits.

Three of the five runs against her were earned.

Brooklyn Tocco, who had an outstanding weekend for Delta, had both RBI on a base hit on the bottom of the sixth inning.

In Saturday's second game, Delta broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the third inning with a five-run rally. The Norse cut it to 6-3 in the fifth inning, but the Pioneers put the game away with four runs in the bottom of the fifth and three more in the sixth inning.

Karlynn Dunn had two home runs for the Pioneers, including a grand slam homer. She ended up with six tuns batted in. Jones went deep for the Norse, and she had a sacrifice fly for a total of two RBI in the game.

Izzy Drabant took the loss in the circle, giving up five runs on four hits in 2 1/3 innings. Cadence Swartz threw all six innings for Delta, scattering five base hits.

On Friday, the Norse were oh-so-close twice, and ended up one run short in both ends of the doubleheader. They had the winning run on base in both games, but could not get the key hit in the seventh inning in either contest.

In Friday's opener, Bay fell behind, 7-2, in the top of the fifth inning, as Tocco smacked a two-run double to highlight a three-run inning. But the Norse rallied in the bottom of the inning with a five-run rally to tie the game. Hailee Duquaine had an RBI double, Desiree Bender followed with a double to put two in scoring position, and Lexie Resseguie followed followed with a long two-run double up the gap to make it 7-5.

Rumble drew a bases-loaded walk, and with two out, Radcliffe's RBI hit tied it at 7.

But in the top of the sixth inning, the Norse defense sprung a leak, with two errors helping the Pioneers take a 10-7 lead, with Alli Kopasz also getting a run-scoring hit.

Megan Yankey slugged a solo home run in the top of the seventh inning to give the Pioneers a 11-7 lead, but the Norse battled back in the bottom half. The game ended, though, with the tying and winning runs on base, as Drabant popped up to the pitcher.

Rumble, Mottin, and Martinez all got two hits for the Norse. Tocco had three hits and drove in four runs for the Pioneers. Fryzel threw a complete game for Delta, allowing ten runs (five earned) on 12 hits. Drabant took the loss, going 5 1/3 innings and allowing ten runs (even earned) on eight hits. Duqaine finished up the final 1 2/3 innings.

Besides Yankey's home run, Tocco and Grace Militelo also hit dingers for the Pioneers.

In Friday's second game, there was much less scoring as Radcliffe and Swartz both worked four quick innings.

Bay took a 1-0 lead on an RBI single by Resseguie in the first inning, but Mankey's RBI hit tied it in the second for Delta. A nicely-turned 5-3 double play on a hard-hit ball by Bender at third base kept the Norse in a 1-1 tie at that point.

It stayed 1-1 until the fifth inning when Tocco singled home Annabelle Carlson, who had walked to start the inning. Then in the sixth, Millitello doubled home Mankey to give the Pioneers a 3-1 lead. Alli Kopasz followed with a sacrifice fly to make it 4-1, but Bender, in relief, got a 1-3 grounder to strand the bases loaded.

The Norse rallied in the bottom of the sixth inning. Jones had a one-out double, and she scored on a double by Rumble. Then Mottin followed with an RBI double, bringing Bay to within 4-3.

Emma Rutter then got a double for the Norse, and seconds later, Martinez nearly tied it, but missed with a shot that went foul into the left field corner. She bounced out to second base to end that inning.

In the top of the seventh, Martinez tracked down two long fly balls in center field to keep the Norse close. And they had their chance in the bottom of the seventh. Duquaine led off with a walk and with two out, Jones ripped another double. Duquaine, however, fell down between third and home, so the tying run did not score.

She went back to third base, and that brought up Rumble with a chance to win the game with a single. Rumble didn't get the chance, though, as she was called out on strikes on a 3-2 pitch after a long at-bat. That ended the game, and Bay's comeback chances.

The Norse left the weekend with a 5-20 overall record, 5-13 in the MCCAA standings. Bay will face last-place Alpena Community College (3-20 overall, 1-13 MCCAA) in the season finales on Tuesday in Escanaba. Game time for the doubleheader is 2:00.

Delta improved to 10-22 overall, 9-9 in MCCAA play.