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Bismarck's Felicity Blair hits a ground ball single just past the glove of Minot pitcher Marisa Andrysiak to knock in a run in the fifth inning of the first game of a softball doublehader at the Clem Kelly Softball Complex on Saturday. Minot won both games.


 Depending on which dugout you were in, Saturday's softball doubleheader at the Clem Kelley diamond complex was really good. Or it was similar to Alexander's terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

 For Minot it was the former. Bismarck experienced the latter.

 "It was a really tough day," summarized Bismarck coach Kurt Grensteiner after the Demons' two setbacks at the hands of Minot.

 Losing the first game 6-5 on a run in the bottom of the seventh inning was tough. Getting crushed 21-0 in the second contest made it a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

 Bismarck rallied from a 5-3 deficit to tie the game 5-5 in the sixth inning of the opener on Emma Barta's two-run single.

 But Minot, given the home-team advantage in the first game of the doubleheader, broke the deadlock in the bottom of the seventh.

 Marley Foltz led off with a single and went all the way to third when the BHS defense botched Jailee Britt's sacrifice bunt. An intentional walk to Sophie Wedar loaded the bases for Hailey Espe, batting ninth. Espe grounded a game-winning single to left field off Demons reliever Macie Lemar.

 The second game required no such heroics.

 Minot, batting first this time, roughed up BHS starting pitcher Lakyn Stark for nine runs in the top of the first inning and reached reliever Logan Gronberg for another. The Majettes got to Gronberg for five more runs in the second inning before she gave way to Lemar, who finished up.

  The huge offensive eruption made it easy sailing for Minot pitcher Rylee Terrel who hurled a one-hit five-inning shutout.

 Terrel aided her own cause in a big way, going 5-for-5 at the plate with a triple and four doubles. Batting in the No. 3 slot, she scored four runs and drove in seven.

 For Terrel, it was a memorable game, both at bat and in the pitching circle. She said she'd never had the luxury of throwing her first pitch with a 10-run lead.

 "It's kind of nice," she said. "Everybody was a little more up in the second game. It's always nice to have that elbow room to work with."

 Terrel said the seven RBIs and the shutout were both firsts for her varsity career.

 "I don't know if I've ever gone 5-for-5 with seven runs batted in before," she noted. That's a little awesome."

 But the one-hit shutout was a bigger deal.

 "I'd never done that before. I haven't always pitched. I had to step up this year, and it's nice to have that checked off my bucket list," she said.

 Shortstop has been Terrel's primary position, with a little pitching on the side. That changed this spring, however.

 "This year I've started to pitch more because one of our pitchers got hurt," she said. "Now I usually pitch the second game."

 Saturday's victory was her fourth in seven decisions.

 In the BHS dugout, Grensteiner said he couldn't recall a longer day at the ballpark.

 "We usually hit the ball much better than we did today," he said.  "We haven't been shut out before, so this was a really tough day."

 Plus, there as an added element of frustration.

 "We do have a few injuries we're trying to work through," he observed.

 The Demons have a couple of days to recover before returning to action.

 Now 12-9 overall and 9-5 in the West Region, Bismarck visits Mandan for a 4:30 twin bill on Tuesday.

 With Saturday's sweep, Minot improved to 16-5 with five straight wins. The Majettes stand 13-3 in regional play.


Sports Reporter