Softball heads to Fort Wayne to face last place Mastodons


ABBY FULLENKAMP Paige Gerdes (16) during batting practice in the spring at the SJAC.

Andrew Holtan

Weather interfered with the South Dakota State softball team’s schedule once again this past weekend.

A series between SDSU and North Dakota State was already moved from Brookings to Sioux Falls April 13, but was cut short after rain, hail and snow.

NDSU won the first game of the April 12 doubleheader 9-2. The Jacks took the second game 11-3 in five innings. Head coach Krista Wood said beating a team like NDSU in five innings and scoring 11 runs gave SDSU a lot of confidence moving forward.

“It showed that we can do big things as a team and everyone has to consistently hit … it was a good rally for our offense to know that we can hit good pitching consistently,” she said.

Senior catcher Brittney Morse hit a home run in both games.

“I think Brittney is swinging at good pitches,” Wood said. “She’s been on time and is swinging to hit doubles and sometimes they go over the fence.”

Freshman pitcher Taylor Compton picked up the win in the second game. She pitched four scoreless innings before giving up three runs in the fifth. It was her sixth win of the season. Senior pitcher Madison Hope, who has 14 wins on the season, struggled in the first game.

“This weekend Madison will start game one and Taylor will start game two, and then in game three I can use both of them. So, it’s important to have a one-two punch.”

SDSU (24-12, 5-3) will head to Fort Wayne, Indiana, April 21 for a three-game series against the Fort Wayne Mastodons, who have not won a game in Summit League play.

“I know they might be in the bottom of the league, but they are a team that I feel is continuing to make strides and get better,” she said.

SDSU has the most home runs in the Summit League with 53 as a team. Morse leads the Jacks with seven home runs followed by junior infielder Ali Herdliska, who has six.

Fort Wayne has given up 33 home runs this season — the most in the Summit League.

Wood said the Jacks need to limit walks and errors and play solid defense if they want to come back to Brookings with three victories.

The Jacks and Mastodons will play a doubleheader starting 10 a.m. April 21 and the third game of the series at 10 a.m. April 22 at the Fort Wayne Softball Field.