Sam Thiel/ Winonan
After seven games the Winona State University softball team was handed its first loss of the season with a 1-0 defeat against Grand View College in Rochester, Minn. on Thursday. The Warriors bounced back in their second game against Grand View with a 10-6 victory in the nightcap.
The starting pitchers on each team allowed six hits combined. The game saw its first and only score in the top of the fifth when Grand View got a runner in scoring position. Hanna Lythberg then committed an error on a line drive to the pitcher that scored the lone run of the game.
Lythberg said, “It is great to know as a pitcher that every teammate behind me will give everything they have on every play.”
Ashley Walker allowed one hit in four innings while striking out six.
Lythberg gave up one hit in three innings of work with three strikeouts and bounced back in the nightcap, tossing three innings while allowing a trio of hits and one earned run after relieving the sophomore starter Karly Olson, who allowed five earned runs in three innings.
Olson said the team was disappointed with their play in the opener but gave credit to Grand View’s starter.
“She threw a heck of a game and was able to get her team out of several innings when we had runners in scoring position,” Olson said. “We are a great hitting team, and it was just one of those games where we weren’t able to put our hits together.”
Down 5-4 in the third inning of the second game, Olson provided the biggest highlight of the afternoon for Winona State: a three-run blast to left. This brought in Allyson O’Herron and Jessica Kullmann to give the Warriors a 7-5 advantage as Winona State would go on to win 10-6 after five and a half innings due to time.
Olson said the second game was a lot better offensively for Winona State.
“The second game everyone stepped up to the plate and took much better swings on the ball, and we were able to put together 10 runs,” Olson said.
Lythberg said, “I think our biggest thing as a team is relying on solid defense to make it through our tough games,”
Winona State University (8-1) is off until March 8 when it heads to Florida for the first of 10 games.