KEEWATIN — After a fairly-good showing at the Irish Dome in Rosemount, Hibbing Community College softball coach Steve Rannikar was looking forward to starting his teams’ conference schedule.
The Cardinals played host to Rainy River at Pete Filippi Field in Keewatin, and the Voyageurs proved to be too much for Hibbing, sweeping the doubleheader 20-1 and 15-0 Friday.
Rainy River pounded out 34 hits in the two games, including six home runs.
On the other hand, the Cardinals only had two hits off two Rainy River pitchers, Maria Leahy and Marissa Kerry.
Rannikar didn’t see that coming.
“From how we did at the Dome, I wasn’t expecting this,” Rannikar said. “We played so much better at the Dome. We had limited errors in both games, so this was an eye-opener.”
Rainy River began game one with a run on an RBI base hit by Maddison Lehto, then the Voyageurs scored six runs in the third.
Jazlyn Arreloa had a two-run home run, Kerry and Jordan Cobbe both had RBI doubles, and Lehto had an RBI single.
It was the fourth inning that put the game away.
Rainy River sent 14 hitters to the plate, playing 12 runs to make it 19-0.
Lehto had a three-run home, Arreola had a two-run shot, Chance Duda had a two-run double, and Lehto had an RBI double. Kerry chipped in with a two-run single.
“They hit the ball,” Rannikar said. “We gave them some extra opportunities to hit the ball, and that’s what hurt us. We had chances to get out of that inning, but we didn’t make some plays.
“Once that happens, the ripple effect can go down to the next five batters in the lineup. We need to solidify our defense. When you give extra opportunities to a good-hitter team, they take advantage of it. The scores show that.”
Cobbe added a solo home run in the fifth to end the Voyageurs’ scoring.
Hibbing got its lone run in the fourth as Kaylyn Bowen reached on a fielder’s choice, took second on a ground out, then she scored when Anna Elias’ fly ball to center field was dropped for an error.
Gena Mancini took the loss, tossing 4.2 innings of 13-hit ball. She struck out six and walked one. Bailey Roscoe worked .1 of an inning, giving up four hits and three walks.
Leahy tossed five innings, allowing just a single to Mancini in the fourth. She struck out eight and walked one.
Lehto had four hits, including a home run, and six RBI. Kerry finished with three hits and three RBI. Getting two hits each were Val Sandoval, Arreloa, Cobbe, Chance Duda and Brooke Candela.
In game two, Rainy River five times in the second and seven times in the fifth for the win.
Kerry was winning pitcher, allowing one hit, striking out three and walking one in five innings of work.
Mancini gave up 16 hits, struck out five and walked two in five innings.
“Offensively, we made it easy on their pitchers,” Rannikar said. “They didn’t have to work hard. They threw strikes, and when we did hit it, they made the plays. That keeps a pitcher fresh.
“We swung at some bad pitches, too. We made it easy on them.”
Sandovl, Kerry and Cobbe each had two hits in the game.
Shayler Lislegard had the Cardinals’ lone hit.
“With seven errors, you’re not going to win too many ball games with that,” Rannikar said. “We gave them too many extra outs. We’ve been working on our defense, so that surprised me today.
“I didn’t expect us to be this sloppy.”
RR 106 (12)1 — 20 18 1
HCC 000 10 — 1 1 3
Rainy River: Maria Leahy (W) and Jordan Cobbe; Hibbing: Gena Mancini (L), Bailey Roscoe (4th), Mancini (4th) and Athena Dunham; 2B — Marissa Kerry, Maddison Lehto, Cobbe, Chance Duda, Brooke Candela; HR — Lehto, Jazlyn Arreloa 2, Cobbe.
RR 051 27 — 15 16 2
HCC 000 00 — 0 1 7
Rainy River: Marissa Kerry (W) and Jordan Cobbe; Hibbing: Gena Mancini (L) and Athena Dunham; 2B — Lehto, Val Sandoval, Brooke Candela; HR — Kerry 2.
CLOQUET — The Hibbing High School boys golf team opened their season by placing second at the Cloquet Invite Friday.
The host Lumberjacks won the event with a 311, followed by the Bluejackets at 371. Grand Rapids had 372 and Duluth Denfeld 375.
Sam Baker of Cloquet was the medalist with a 74, followed by Hibbing’s Conner Willard at 75. Karson Patten, Brayden Tyman and Trevor Steinert, all of Cloquet, had 75, 80 and 82 respectively.
Other Hibbing scores were as follows: Peyton Taylor 98, Nick Horvath 98, Dawson Peterson 99, Ryley Grunenwald 100, Erick Sanborn 101 and Sam Gabardi 116.
“It was a good day,” Hibbing coach Tom Bittman said. “There was a lot of rust seeing as it was the first day on the course for most of them.”
Mesabi East 0
AURORA — The Bluejackets improved to 2-0 on the season with the six-inning victory over the Giants Friday.
No other information was available on the game.