The DeForest prep softball team had its first real test of the season on April 9 when it hosted Badger North Conference rival Waunakee.
After blowing out its first four opponents of the season, the Norskies had a tight battle with the Warriors. In the end, the Lady Norskies held off a late Waunakee rally to prevail 3-2.
“I didn’t feel we put a very clean game together, but still found a way to come out on top,” Norski coach Jerry Schwenn said. “Our ability to sacrifice bunt and advance runners was a big part of our success.”
DeForest is now 6-0 overall and 4-0 in the Badger North.
The game was scoreless until the Norskies broke through with a run in the bottom of the fourth inning. Sam Schaeffer scored on a ground ball by Taylor Tschumper.
The Lady Norskies scored what turned out to be the winning runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. Kylee Jansen and Cammi Riemer both had RBI sacrifice flies.
“We feel like we are at our best toward the late innings because we have an experienced group,” Schwenn said. “I think we embrace those situations more than most teams.”
Waunakee came up with its first run in the top of the sixth inning, as Trista Ripp scored on a fly ball by Lauren Smithback.
The Warriors cut the deficit to a run after Callie Kesilewski came home on a double by Kaylyn King.
Waunakee had the tying run on third base when the Norskies got the final out of the game.
“They strung some hits together in the 7th inning, but again our defense came through and we finished off the game,” Schwenn said.
Riemer, Aleah Grundahl and Kaylee Ramirez led DeForest at the plate with two hits apiece.
Taylor Shaw and Tschumper combined on a four-hitter in the pitcher’s circle. Shaw had five strikeouts and five walks in six innings of work, while Tschumper had a strikeout in relief.
Lexi Ripp had two of the Warriors’ four hits.
Ally Ronk pitched all six innings for Waunakee and had five strikeouts.
The Lady Norskies had three games canceled due to bad weather last week. They were scheduled to play in Reedsburg on April 11, but it has been moved to April 22.
Deforest was slated to host both Madison Memorial and River Valley last Saturday. No makeup date has been set.
The Lady Norskies will play in Baraboo at 4:30 p.m. tonight.
DeForest will play a doubleheader in Stevens Point on Saturday starting at 11 a.m.