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Tom Mix, Published May 31 2012

Spartans offense shines in ND Class A state softball win

WEST FARGO – Fargo North had been struggling offensively, but a 17-hit outburst in the first round of the North Dakota Class A state softball tournament was just what the Spartans needed.

North’s bats awoke in a 13-6 win over Dickinson on Thursday.

Morgan Shelton was

2-for-3 with two RBIs and two runs scored for the Spartans (18-8). Anna Mellick was

2-for-3 with an RBI, two runs scored and a triple for North, who plays Minot Ryan in the semifinals at 6 p.m. today.

“Our hitting really came through,” said senior catcher Mara Teschendorf who was 2-for-5 with three runs scored.

“We had been struggling with that, but we really picked it up today. Everything kind of fell into place and worked out.”

The Spartans jumped out to a 6-0 lead after the first two innings.

“I think we came out rather impressive,” North head coach Aaron Kliniske said. “They stayed focused and kept grinding.”

Madi Steier was 2-for-4 with an RBI to pace the Midgets (21-11).

“We had a hard time getting that first strike,” Dickinson head coach Bill Butterfield said. “That puts a lot of pressure in getting it over the plate, and they just hit them. They wound up with 17 hits. We didn’t have an answer for it.”

D 021 111 0– 6 9 2

FN 150 322 x–13 17 2

Butterfield, LaFond (3) and Yates. Novacek, Fischer (5), Novacek (7) and Teschendorf. W–Novacek. L–Butterfield.

Bismarck Century 10,

Grand Forks Red River 5

Two big blasts off the bat of Bismarck Century junior outfielder Brianna Flynn proved to be vital for the Patriots on Thursday.

Flynn connected for a two-run home run in the fifth inning and a grand slam in the sixth, helping Century to a 10-5 win over Grand Forks Red River.

“The difference was Brianna Flynn,” Century head coach Kevin Ziegler said. “She is by far one of the better hitters in the state. She comes through in the clutch.”

Flynn finished 2-for-4 with six RBIs. Dominique Giesen was 4-for-4 with four singles and two runs scored for the Patriots 27-5.

Century plays in the second semifinal at 7:45 p.m. today.

Red River mounted a rally in the late innings, scoring a run in the fifth and two apiece in the sixth and seventh.

“We hit in spurts today, but we just didn’t have any consistency,” Red River head coach Mike Bisenius said.

Morgan Smith was 2-for-4 with three RBIs and a triple to lead the Roughriders (10-11).

GFRR 000 012 2– 5 7 2

BC 010 324 x–10 13 1

Lundby and Dahl. Lardy, Herold (7) and Holland. W–Lardy. L–Lundby.

Minot Ryan 5, Devils Lake 1

It took a while, but Minot Ryan’s offense strung a rally together.

The Lions scored five runs in the fifth inning to post a 5-1 win over Devils Lake in the first round on Thursday.

“I think we had a little first-game jitters,” Minot Ryan coach Fred Mueller said. “Sometimes it takes us a while to get the bats cracking. … They kept us off stride a little bit.”

The Lions play Fargo North at 6 p.m. today in the semifinals.

Hannah Kramer got Minot Ryan on the board with an RBI single in the fifth, which sparked the big inning. Kramer was 2-for-4 with a run scored.

Freshman starting pitcher Hannah Stewart struck out 11 batters to pace the Lions (28-5).

“Hannah has been solid for us all year long,” Mueller said. “She’s been a powerhouse for us at pitcher and at the plate as well.”

The Lions are on a six-game winning streak.

Miriah Yoder was 1-for-3 with a run scored to lead the Firebirds (9-9).

DL 000 000 1– 1 3 2

MR 000 050 x– 5 7 2

Hornstein and Yoder. Stewart and Lipp. W–Stewart. L–Hornstein.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Tom Mix at (701) 451-5651