DAC devastation: Jamestown College’s season comes to a close in the championship play-in game, againIt was a new year and a new team, but the conclusion was somewhat familiar. The Jamestown College softball team, for the second straight year, fell one game shy of making a championship game appearance at the Dakota Athletic Conference Softball Tournament in Valley State. This time it came at the hands of top-seeded Dickinson State.
VALLEY CITY — It was a new year and a new team, but the conclusion was somewhat familiar.
The Jamestown College softball team, for the second straight year, fell one game shy of making a championship game appearance at the Dakota Athletic Conference Softball Tournament in Valley State.
This time it came at the hands of top-seeded Dickinson State.
After bombarding their opponents in the first two games on Sunday, the Jimmies scored just one run against the No. 11-ranked team in the nation as the Blue Hawks soared to a 9-1 victory in six innings to end JC’s season once again in the championship play-in game.
“Our girls fought, fought and fought. It’s just tough when you have to play that many games and that many innings,” JC coach Kevin Gall said. “It just was a little too much to bite off.”
The Jimmies opened the tournament with a 9-6 win over Valley City State on Saturday but followed up with a 4-3 loss to Minot State in Saturday’s nightcap to drop the Jimmies into the loser’s bracket.
JC finished the year 32-14, six wins better than last season, and 12-4 in the DAC.
“You look back and we set a goal at the beginning (of the year) that we wanted to win the games that we were supposed to win, and for the most part we did that,” Gall said. “One of the things we also said is we wanted to win some games that we shouldn’t win, and we also did that, so we just have to find a way to do that at the end of the year come tournament time.”
Dickinson State 9, Jimmies 1
The Jimmies combined for 24 runs through their first 14 innings on Sunday, but it was the final five innings that doomed JC in the end.
After jumping out to an early 1-0 lead in the first inning, the Jimmies were held scoreless the rest of the way while Dickinson State tallied nine runs to defeat the Jimmies 9-1 in six innings.
Dickinson State’s Nicole Youngblood drove in three runs after going 3 for 3 from the plate, including a homer, to lead the Blue Hawk offensive attack.
Vanessa Adame and went 4 for 4 with an RBI, while Jody Lantz, Jessica Huseby and Danielle Crawford each had a hit and an RBI. Crawford’s hit was a double in the sixth inning that helped spark a six-run inning that lifted the Blue Hawks to victory.
“We gave up a few long balls and that’s not going to help you unless you can match that,” Gall said. “With what they (the Blue Hawks) can do offensively you have to try and match that and put them in situations that they aren’t used to.”
The Blue Hawks added a run in the second and two more in the third to take a 3-1 lead and from there Taysia Kaufman held the Jimmie bats in check the rest of the way.
Kaufman allowed the lone run on eight hits and no walks.
Jimmie ace Kate Street threw five strong innings before running into some trouble in the bottom of the sixth where she gave up five earned runs.
“You could tell Kate kind of ran out of gas a little bit,” said Gall.
Jessica Lees relieved Street (18-7) with one out in the inning but the Blue Hawks continued to pile on the offense as they ended the game before Lees was able to get out of the inning.
Street, who gave up eight runs on 11 hits and three walks over 5 1/3 innings, threw her final pitch with the Jimmies despite just being a junior. The Stevensville, Mont. native will be transferring next year to finish her degree in Radiology.
“She always wants to be out there in clutch situations,” Gall said. “She was just a workhorse.”
The Jimmies will also be bidding farewell to catcher Courtney Wong and shortstop Amy Shadinger.
Wong, who caught all five games in the DAC tournament, was one of just two Jimmies to compile multiple hits against the Blue Hawks.
“Courtney is just the definition of hard worker,” said Gall. “She was willing to catch all five (games) and I don’t know if she would have had it any other way. At the same time she was a spark plug for us at the plate.”
Shadinger went 1 for 2 at the plate and had three put-outs in the field in her final game with the Jimmies.
“Amy Shadinger is just a real solid all-conference shortstop that we’re certainly going to miss,” Gall said. “She was a hustler, a hard worker, a perfectionist and intense. Those things we’ll miss.”
Jimmies 11, Mayville State 2
JC used the heart of its batting order to crush Mayville State and earn a spot in the championship play-in game with Dickinson State.
Sarah Heinemann and Wong, the Jimmies’ No. 3 and 4 hitters, combined for six hits, two home runs and five RBIs as the Jimmies breezed by the Comets 11-2 in six innings.
Lees (11-7) went all six innings and allowed just two run on five hits and no walks. She also fanned three batters.
Jimmies 12, Black Hills State 7
Clinging to just a one-run lead heading into the home half of the fourth, JC added six runs over the next three innings to take a commanding 12-6 lead into the final inning against Black Hills State.
The Yellow Jackets put up two more runs in the seventh but it wasn’t nearly enough as the Jimmies earned the 12-7 win in the first game of competition on Sunday.
Four Jimmies had multiple RBIs in the game, including Wong, who went yard for the third time of the tournament. Wong went 3 for 4 with 2 RBIs.
Heather Haegele went 2 for 5 with a double and 2 RBIs from the leadoff spot, and Becky Lewis drove in two after going 3 for 4.
Sophomore Kelsie Jensen also had 2 RBIs to go along with her two runs scored after going 2 for 3 from the plate.
Karly Penner, Shadinger and Cassie Hite also drove in runs for the Jimmies.
Street pitched six solid innings for the Jimmies, allowing just three earned runs on eight hits and two walks.
Jimmies 9, Valley City State 6
The Jimmies got off on the right foot Saturday to start the DAC Tournament, defeating tournament hosts Valley City State University 9-6 after rallying to score five runs in the final three innings.
Street struck out five but walked six and allowed nine hits as the Vikings pushed six earned runs across the plate.
Krystal Hathaway went all six innings for Valley City State, giving up nine runs on 13 hits and one walk.
Haegele, Heinemann and Becky Lewis each drove in a couple runs, while Wong and Hite had one RBI apiece.
Haegele hit her first home run of the season as part of her 3 for 4 performance from the plate.
Minot State 4, Jimmies 3
JC jumped out to an early 3-0 lead after the top-half of the first inning against Minot State, but the offense would end there as the Beavers defeated the Jimmies 4-3 in the second game Saturday.
Wong drove in all three runs for the Jimmies on a three-run homer in her first at-bat of the game. She also added a single later in the game, making up the only two hits the Jimmies would muster throughout the game.
Mandy Greenberg threw a gem for the Beavers, allowing three runs on just two hits and nine strikeouts over seven innings.
Minot State defeated Dickinson State early Sunday to earn a spot in the championship contest but the Blue Hawks repaid the favor with a 6-4 win in the championship, extending the series to Game 2.
The DAC title will be decided today at noon in Valley City.
The DAC Softball Tournament in Valley City
Dickinson State University 9, Jamestown College 1
Jimmies 100 000 — 1 8 3
Dickinson State 012 006 — 9 13 1
Kate Street, Jessica Lees (6) and Courtney Wong. Taysia Kaufman and Erika Arvizo. W—Kaufman. L—Street. 2B: JC—Courtney Wong; DSU—Danielle Crawford. HR: DSU—Jessica Huseby, Nicole Youngblood.
Jamestown College 11, Mayville State 2
Jimmies 121 403 — 11 15 2
Mayville State 010 001 — 2 5 4
Jessica Lees and Courtney Wong; Morgan Bickell, Kate Rieu (3) and Lyndsi Maglish. 2B: JC—Heather Haegele, Kelsie Jensen; MSU—Jessica Rico. HR: JC—Wong, Sarah Heinemann. SB: JC—Haegele, Kate Street, Jensen, Becky Lewis; MSU—Krista Hendricks.
Jamestown College 12, Black Hills State University 7
BHSU 003 200 2 — 7 13 3
Jimmies 024 123 X — 12 18 2
Katie Wagner, Karissa Norte (3) and Rebecca Hugley and Kelsey Kelsey Lock. Kate Street, Alyssa Record (7), Cassie Hite (7) and Courtney Wong. W—Street. L—Wagner. 2B: JC—Heather Haegele, Sarah Heinemann, Courtney Wong. HR: BHSU—Wagner; JC—Wong.
Jamestown College 9, Valley City State 6
VCSU 030 100 2 — 6 9 3
Jimmies 130 122 X — 9 13 2
Krystal Hathaway and Amanda Carter. Kate Street and Courtney Wong. W—Street. L—Hathaway. 2B: VCSU—Cyndi Figol; JC—Amy Shadinger. HR: VCSU—Hilary Kulczewski; JC—Heather Haegele.
Minot State 4, Jamestown College 3
Jimmies 300 000 0 — 3 2 0
Minot State 200 200 X — 4 6 0
Jessica Lees and Courtney Wong. Mandy Greenberg and Lindsey Landles. 2B: MSU—Janessa Penner. HR: JC—Courtney Wong. SB: JC—Heather Haegele.