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DWU softball team sweeps Presentation

The Dakota Wesleyan University softball team took two games from Presentation College Thursday at McWhirter Field in Mitchell.

With strong pitching performances from Jill Dickson and Lorissa Loeppky and timely hitting, the Tigers (14-10) earned a 5-3 victory in the opening game of the doubleheader and a 10-2 victory in the final game.

“The girls played extremely well,” DWU softball coach Ed Kieff said. “The girls have won five in a row and I am very happy with the wins.”

Dickson threw seven complete innings, allowing one earned run on five hits and striking out nine Presentation hitters.

While Dickson was dealing on the mound, catcher Hailey Unger and designated hitter Natalie Gutierrez provided the offensive sparks. Unger hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the first to put the Tigers up 2-0, while Gutierrez added to the lead with a three-run double in the bottom of the third.

“Hailey hit one in the first inning and that set the tone for us for the rest of the day, and Jill shut down their offense pretty good,” Kieff said. “She got into a little bit of trouble in the sixth, but she had a good game overall. ... Lorissa Loeppky pitched extremely well in the second game as well. She only allowed a run and has the ability to shut down teams with her changeup.”

DWU jumped on Presentation starter Jenae Pantle in the first inning of the second game Thursday. The Tigers scored five runs in the inning with help from a double from Unger, which scored Danielle Klassen and Katie Anderus, and a single from Bailey Gummer, which scored Emily Sudbeck and Vanessa Mendez. Gummer added one more RBI and finished the game with three RBIs, while Lorissa Loeppky went 1-for-2 and had three RBIs.

Loeppky got the win on the mound for the Tigers, after throwing four complete innings, allowing one earned run on six hits.

“We have the ability to score runs very fast,” Kieff said. “Our strikeouts are down and that has helped our run production.”

The Tigers step back into conference play with a doubleheader against Nebraska Wesleyan at 5 p.m. today at McWhirter Field in Mitchell.