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Ridgewater claims state softball crown

CLOQUET -- It's not a good idea to fire up a team known for its hitting prowess.

That's exactly what Anoka-Ramsey did when it upset top-seeded Ridgewater 5-4 in the championship round of the MCAC state softball tournament on Saturday.

Unfortunately, for Anka-Ramsey, it needed to beat Ridgewater twice to win the state title after coming out of the loser's bracket.

"The girls weren't happy at all after that loss," said Ridgewater coach Todd Thorstad. "They were pretty fired up for the second game. And I think (Anoka-Ramsey) might have been worn out after coming out of the loser's bracket and playing four games and we had only played the one against them."

Ridgewater (33-8), which had won its first three games of the double-elimination tournament that began on Friday, then came out for Game Two and pushed 12 runs across in the first inning and went on to an 18-6 rout to capture the state crown.

Sara Beyer rapped a pair of two-run doubles in the first inning. Ridgewater sent 16 batters to the plate ion that frame with eight collecting hits.

Ridgewater will next host the Region 13A tournament Thursday and Friday. The Lady Warriors open against Century College at noon, while Anoka-Ramsey and Rochester meet in the other semifinal.

Ridgewater wasted a 4-0 lead in the first game as A-R put two runs on the board in both the fourth and fifth innings to tied the game. In the last of the seventh, Andy Shoephoerster reached on an error to lead off the inning, then stole second and scored the winning run on a single by Renae Hanson.

Hanson was 3-for-4 with two RBI. Alex Thunborg and Ashley Zimmel each had two hits and an RBI.

For Ridgewater, Emily Roelike had two hits and drove in a run. Brando Bodin had two RBI.

Andrea Krause took the loss, scattering seven hits over six innings, while walking four and striking out six.

In Game Two, the Lady Warriors finished with 16 hits. Whitley Strei went 3-for-4, including a pair of doubles, and drove in one run. Roelike, Bodin, Beyer, Krause and Jen Storck had two hits each. Krause drove in three runs and Beyer finished with five RBI.

Shannon Heitz pitched all five innings for the win, weathering six hits and nine walks.

Game One

Anoka-Ramsey 5, Ridgewater 4

Ridgewater 031 000 0 -- 4 7 2

A-R 000 220 1 -- 5 7 2

HITTING - Ridgewater: Emily Roelike 2-for-4, rbi; Brandi Bodin 1-for-4, 2b, 2 rbi; Sara Beyer 1-for-4, 2b; Andrea Krause 1-for-4; Bevin Williams 1-for-3; Samantha Cunningham 1-for-2 ... Anoka-Ramsey: Alex Thunborg 2-for-4, 3b, rbi; Renae Hanson 3-for-4, 2 rbi; Ashley Zimmel 2-for-3, rbi

PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) -- Ridgewater: Andrea Krause (L) 6-7-5-3-4-6 ... Anoka-Ramsey: Mel Palm (W) 7-7-4-2-1-2

Game Two

Anoka-Ramsey 18, Ridgewater 6

Ridgewater (12)01 32 --18 16 2

Home 2 02 20 -- 6 6 2

HITTING - Ridgewater: Emily Roelike 2-for-4, 2b, 2 rbi; Brandi Bodin 2-for-4, 3b; Sara Beyer 2-for-4, 2 2b's, 5 rbi; Andrea Krause 2-for-5, 2b, 3 rbi; Whitley Strei 3-for-4, 2 3b's, rbi; Bevin Williams 1-for-3, 2b, rbi; Jen Storck 2-for-4, rbi; Amanda Horst 1-for-2; Samanthan Cunningham 1-for-2, rbi ... Anoka-Ramsey: Alex Thunborg 2-for-3; Andy Schoephoerster 1-for-3; Renae Hanson 2-for-3, 2 2b's

PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) -- Ridgewater: Shannon Heitz (W) 5-6-6-3-9-2 ... Anoka-Ramsey: Mel Palm (L) 13-3-7-5-3-0, Brittany Jergenson 23-6-5-5-0-0, Kristal Plouff 4-7-6-5-1-1