Dakota Wesleyan swept in softball DH by NorthwesternThe Dakota Wesleyan University softball team lost 5-2 and 2-1 to Northwestern in a Great Plains Athletic Conference doubleheader Tuesday at Dr. McWhirter Field.
By: Kevin Pottebaum, The Daily Republic
The Dakota Wesleyan University softball team lost 5-2 and 2-1 to Northwestern in a Great Plains Athletic Conference doubleheader Tuesday at Dr. McWhirter Field.
The losses drop the Tigers to 4-14 overall and 2-2 in the GPAC.
“We have high expectations,” Wesleyan coach Ed Kieff said after the game. “It’s very difficult to take two close losses at home like this.”
The Tigers scored first in both games but were unable to hold their early leads.
In the first game, DWU scored in the second inning to lead 1-0, but the Red Raiders tied the game at 1 in the third inning and scored 3 in the third.
Roni Nekrassoff was the starting pitcher in the first game for the Tigers and pitched 3 2/3 innings. She gave up four earned runs in the loss.
“She pitched well but got into a little trouble in the fourth inning and we had to pull her,” Kieff said. “That was tough. I was hoping to get five or six innings out of her.”
Brandi Nekrassoff, who was named GPAC pitcher of the week for last week, relieved her sister and gave up four hits and one earned run in 3 1/3 innings. She pitched the entire second game, giving up two earned runs on eight hits.
“We had great pitching again from Brandi,” Kieff said. “She really stepped up and is just a phenomenal pitcher.”
The Tigers were outhit 10-7 in game one and 8-5 in game two.
“It seems like we’re having a hard time getting timely hits,” Kieff said. “(Northwestern) had off-speed pitchers that we struggled with and we really shouldn’t.”
Keely Bracelin picked up the win in the first game for Northwestern. She pitched the entire game, giving up two earned runs on seven hits.
Katie VandeVoort got the win in game two for the Red Raiders in another complete-game performance. She gave up one unearned run in the game while allowing five hits.
“It is a focus of the team to work on our hitting,” Kieff said. “I think we will get to the point where we score a lot more runs and I think we’ll get there.”
Kieff said this weekend will be a chance for the hitters to get some more practice at the plate while also getting some other pitchers a chance to work on their stuff.
The Tigers will be traveling to Sioux City, Iowa, to play in the Morningside tournament. Their first game is at 11 a.m. Saturday against Jamestown College.
“We’ll do some different things,” Kieff said. “We’re not so worried about winning and losing in non-conference games. We’re going to work on some stuff.”
Dakota Wesleyan will play five games during the tournament before heading back into conference play next week against Briar Cliff.