Three big wins, EDC crown for Packers softball
In an eventful week for Packers sports, the softball team stood out amongst the rest, winning their three games -- all of them by a wide margin -- to claim the Eastern Dakota Conference championship.
The Packers overwhelmed the Grand Forks Central Knights 17-0 on Thursday, then beat the Devils Lake Firebirds 10-0 before topping the Valley City Hi-Liners 8-0 on Saturday to take the EDC crown.
While scoring 36 runs in three games would normally be the main key to success, it was the team's pitching that stood out in the conference tournament.
Senior pitcher Jolene Woodbury shined in the first game, throwing a five-inning perfect game and striking 10 of the 15 batters she faced. She also batted in two runs from the batter's box.
In Friday's game against Devils Lake, junior Brittany Rheault took the mound and did not disappoint. She struck out 13 batters and only allowed two hits in the 10-run victory.
Junior clean-up hitter Michaela Liebl led the team at the plate, going 3-for-4 with a double and four runs batted in.
The Packers also had five other hitters -- Woodbury, shortstop Ashley Sather, third baseman Lexi Lennon, second baseman Jordyn Johnson and left fielder Paige Andel -- with two hits each.
Rheault and Woodbury split time pitching in the championship game and combined for 11 strikeouts while allowing just two hits. They also led the team offensively with two hits a piece.
With the conference title, the Packers take the No. 1 seed in the east, and will take on Bismarck High tomorrow evening in the first round of the North Dakota state tournament at Elmwood Park. Their game will begin 35 minutes after Bishop Ryan's and Fargo North's 4:30 game.