ST. ANSGAR — With a potential Class 1A second round regional game looming next week between these two teams, St. Ansgar showed some power in a 14-4, six-inning softball win on Tuesday.
The Saints unofficially combined for 14 hits, including two home runs and two triples against the Wildcats, which came in with a 16-7 overall record.
“We didn’t show them our best stuff,” Riceville coach Andrea Bauer said. “We’re better than what we looked like tonight and any team can beat any other team on any given night.
“And that’s what is so fun about post-season. We have to take care of business first Tuesday night. We’re not taking anything for granted.”
Indeed, Riceville must face a dangerous 2-17 Rockford team on July 6 before that possible game.
“They can be (dangerous),” Bauer said. “We were supposed to play them regular season and we got rained out, we haven’t seen each other, so that first and foremost have to take care of that game and then we’ll see what Wednesday brings.”
St. Ansgar coach Lance Schutjer is liking what he’s seeing from his Saints, meanwhile.
“I told them as good a team as they (Riceville) are, do the little things right,” coach Schutjer said. “Because they do the little things right. They are well-coached, they hit the ball and they run fast. We have to do the same.
“If they score, we have to score. We had to match them with everything they do. It was a good match-up for us to see where we stand with a team we might face next week. I was happy with our performance offensively. Defensively, we still have to clean a couple things up.”
Riceville had seven hits total, two each from Madison Mayer and Abby Retterath and doubles from Callee Fair and Retterath off of Josie Juhl.
The Saints got some power from Taylor Hanna, who homered in her first at-bat, hitting the scoreboard for a two-run homer, and then tripled. In fact, she was a double shy of the cycle as she later singled in the sixth inning.
Juhl, who was 3-for-4, hit a two-run homer that ended the game via the 10-run rule in the sixth.
“We told the girls that if you get beat by the pitcher the first time, you make adjustments,” Schutjer said. “I think we learned how to sit back and wait and hit our pitch, not hers, so it was nice to see a couple of those hits and the kids put the ball in play, hit it well. There is a little luck that goes with some of that but we hit the ball hard tonight and fortunately, a few went out.”
Schutjer added that it was a shame that the two teams could possibly meet so early in the region.
“They are definitely a great team, it’s unfortunate that we have to play them because I think they are easily a team that could make a nice run and potentially make it to state,” Schutjer said. “It’s unfortunate we all have to be in the same region.”
Riceville 002 020 – 4 7 1
St. Ansgar 502 232 – 14 14 1
Winning battery — Josie Juhl and Abby Hemann. Losing battery — Josie Gansen and Abby Retterath. Two or more hits — Rice (Madison Mauer, Retterath); SA (Taylor Hanna 3, Kirsten Boerjan 3, Josie Juhl 3, Kennedy Schwiesow, Brooklyn Hackbart). 2B — Rice (Callee Fair, Retterath); SA (Schwiesow); 3B — SA (Hackbart, Hanna). HR — SA (Hanna, Juhl). SB — Rice (Mauer 2, C. Fair); SA (H. Anderson, Kinsey Anderson). RBI — Rice (C. Fair 2); SA (Hanna 4, Juhl 3, Schwiesow 2, Hackbart).
* Statistics are unofficial