Softball Blanks Concordia and Finlandia Posted on March 17th, 2021 by

MANKATO, Minn. – The Gustavus softball team competed in two non-conference games on Wednesday morning in Mankato to finish with its first two wins of the season. “We put a lot of things together,” said Head Coach Coley Ries. “Some of the things we lacked in our Sunday games we were able to complete today. Small ball, stealing bases, and making plays defensively. I think overall it just came with having the experience of the first two games under our belt and we felt more comfortable today.”

Gustavus 3, Concordia 0 | BOX SCORE

Set for a 7 a.m. first pitch, the Gusties faced off against Concordia for the first game of the day. Gustavus came out strong on defense with an easy 1-2-3 start off in the first inning to shut the Cobbers down. In the bottom of the fourth inning Kate Murray (So., Minnetonka) reached on a fielder’s choice and Allie Skuza (So., Princeton) recorded an RBI to get Gustavus on the board. Madelyn Mueller (Fy., North Mankato) hit a bunt single followed by a walk from Ashley Neunfeldt (Sr., Bloomington). Both players stole before Kayla Ruud’s (So. Savage) sacrifice fly scored Mueller for the second run. Kaylyn Leonard (Jr., Plymouth) closed the inning with a ground out to score Neuenfeldt for the final run of the first game.  

Neunfeldt faced 25 batters in her seven innings pitched, leaving the Cobbers scoreless for the 3-0 final.

“Having our first wins is very exciting. Going into this game we were just really pushing to get that first run across and once we got that, it was like a monkey off our back and to be able to get our first win was exciting. I’m really proud of our girls for putting it together and learning so much from our first outing and putting it into play for this one.”

Gustavus 4, Finlandia 0| BOX SCORE

Gustavus had a hot start in its second game of the morning against Finlandia. A bases-loaded single from Leonard scored Neuenfeldt and an error from a Lions shortstop brought in Ruud right after to put the Gusties up by two runs in the first inning. A triple from Piper Otto (Fy., Brooklyn Park) set the Gusties up in the top of the third inning and a grounder from Leonard tacked on the third run. The Lions put pressure on Gustavus defensively but Otto would reach on a fielder’s choice and Neunfeldt scored to put a stamp on the 4-0 finish. Payton Belt (Fy., Indianola, Iowa) was credited with the win on her six innings pitched and Amara Packey (Jr., Fridley) closed for the last inning save.

“A lot of them hit the ball really well, Piper had a couple extra base hits and as a first-year those are huge ones to get past as well,” Ries said. “Our pitching staff did a great job with two shutouts and we got three pitchers in the game. Payton got her first win in the circle so it’s fun to see all the ‘firsts’ happen, especially for our younger players.”

The Gusties are back in action on Thursday morning against Bethany Lutheran at 7 a.m. and Finlandia again at 9 a.m. “Tomorrow we’ll just go in with the same game plan,” Ries said. “We know that we need to continue to hit the ball. In our Finlandia game we could have put up more runs, we had a surge and laid off a little bit. Staying strong with our bats is going to be really important for us tomorrow.”


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