The St. Olaf softball team traveled to Rochester, Minn. on March 6 for a pair of games against the University of Dubuque and Luther College. Unfortunately for the Oles, they were unsuccessful in both encounters, falling 0-14 against the Spartans and 1-12 against the Norse.
In the first game of the evening, St. Olaf took to the field aginst University of Dubuque. Looking to win its first game of the season, St. Olaf had a positive start, with the first run of the game after Brooke Paradise ’17 batted in Alex Lopez ’18 with a grounded out hit towards the Spartans’ shortstop.
However, the Spartans quickly restored parity in the second inning with a run of their own, bring the game back to a 1-1 deadlock. The game took a turn for the worse for the Oles in the third inning, when the Spartans scored seven runs of five hits to effectively take control of the game. Dubuque scored four more runs in their next-at-bat, taking the final game score to 12-1.
In St. Olaf’s second game of the evening, it took on Luther College. Unlike the first game of the evening, the Oles fell behind early, with the Norse scoring three runs in the first inning. The score remained locked at 0-3 throughout the second inning, with the Norse breaking open the game in the third inning, scoring six runs.
Trailing 0-9, it proved to be too monumental a task for the Oles to fight their way back into the game, as the Norse furthered their tally in the fourth and fifth innings by three and two runs respectively, with the Oles falling 0-14.
The losses were valuable for St. Olaf, as it builds towards MIAC competition. The Oles will open conference play against Macalester College in a double-header in St. Paul, Minn. on March 25. Last time the two teams met, it was the Oles who were victorious, recording 7-6 and 9-7 victories in hard-fought clashes.
Opening the season with a win would go a long way in helping the Oles improve on last seasons’ 10th place MIAC finish, where the team finished the conference with a 7-15 record.
St. Olaf will have a chance to prepare for an important match-up with Macalester College with a pair of games against Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa on March 22.