Softball season wraps up

Dayna Wichhart—Staff Writer

Photo Credit: Dordt University Athletics

On Thursday, April 28, the 20-17-1 Dordt University Women’s Softball Team faced-off against Dakota Wesleyan in their final conference game.

That morning, the team’s juniors had participated in Assessment Day before preparing for the late afternoon game. 

Abby Kraemer, a junior pitcher, tried to stick to her normal pregame routine: a morning breakfast of eggs, sausage, and peanut butter toast. She didn’t leave her apartment without coffee, either.

“There’s a lot more caffeine involved in my routine than I’d like to admit,” Kraemer said. “But I always make sure to drink water and hydrate myself.”

In Kraemer’s Southview apartment, each of her roommates play softball as well, readying one other’s hair before each game. 

Photo Credit: Dordt University Athletics

Later that afternoon, the team arrived in Mitchell, South Dakota, looking to bounce back after losing both matchups at home versus Northwestern on Tuesday. They also hoped to secure a couple of wins to end the regular season and build momentum as they headed into the postseason.  

Kraemer, who’s pitched since third grade and played softball for as long as she can remember, started on the mound for the first of the two games, allowing zero runs in the first inning.

A 0-0 score remained the theme for the game as Dordt and Dakota Wesleyan threw, tagged, and struck each other out for the next eight innings.  

After nine scoreless innings, the game went into the tenth. Dordt went to bat once again, and Ivy Terpstra found herself on third base after Emma Groen grounded out. The Defenders failed to score as the next two batters, Hailey Wilken and Ella Koster, struck out swinging to end the top of the tenth. 

The Defenders trotted back to the field to defend against Dakota Wesleyan’s offense once again. 

In the bottom of the tenth, Dakota Wesleyan walked it off with an RBI single. 

After a scoreless first two innings, the second game of the evening shaped up to be another defensive struggle. But in the top of the third, the Defenders put themselves on top with three runs. Karlie Olsen doubled to left center, scoring Jessica Oules. And senior Brooklyn Van Oort knocked in Olsen and Chandler Schemper on a 2 RBI single.

Photo Credit: Dordt University Athletics

At the top the sixth inning, Hailey Wilken scored on a Schemper single to center field for the Defenders. Dordt went ahead 4-0. After the field change, a Dakota Wesleyan two-run homer split the lead in half. The seventh inning proved to be a recurring nightmare for the Defender team. After the Defenders failed to score a run in their at-bat, Dakota Wesleyan trimmed the lead to one on an RBI single. The Tigers walked it off again with a second two run homer.

The two losses dropped the Defenders to a 20-19-1 record on the season. Many of their wins came from their trip to Florida over spring break. 

Dordt’s softball team consistently travels over spring break to play against teams across the nation. This year the team went to Orlando, Florida and matched-up against nationally ranked teams. They went 7-2-1.

Kraemer is proud of her team. She has seen improvement and growth from last year to this year. The team looks forward to the GPAC tournament. 

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