Softball preview 2023: LQPV Eagles plans to see more good things happening this spring

Eagles, led by Taylor Shelstad, Rylee Lund and Ayanna Gipson, hope to build on a 23-4 record in ‘22

Ayanna Gipson of Lac Qui Parle Valley swings at an incoming pitch while taking on KMS in Murdock on Thursday, April 28, 2022.
Ayanna Gipson of Lac Qui Parle Valley swings at an incoming pitch while taking on KMS in Murdock on Thursday, April 28, 2022.
Macy Moore / West Central Tribune

MADISON — Lac qui Parle Valley returns a strong nucleus of players to a lineup that brought the Eagles plenty of success in 2022.

Three softball seniors will lead the way for the Eagles, who are fresh off a 23-4 overall record and 16-2 Camden Conference mark. The big three are pitcher/shortstop Taylor Shelstad, outfielder Rylee Lund and catcher/outfielder Ayanna Gipson.

Taylor Shelstad returns as a Class A All-State Second Team pick and will likely be the Eagles’ No. 1 pitcher, according to Scott Sawatzky, who is in his second season as LQPV’s head coach.

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Lac qui Parle Valley Eagles logo
Contributed / Lac qui Parle Valley Schools
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Shelstad batted .440, with a 510 on-base percentage and a .631 slugging percentage off a team-high 37 hits with 43 stolen bases.

“(Taylor’s) softball IQ is second to none,” Sawatzky said. “Her instincts put constant pressure on the opposition.”


Lund returns as an All-Camden Conference selection. She batted .362 with a .440 on-base percentage and served as the anchor to LQPV’s outfield.

“(Rylee) makes great reads on fly balls, has a strong arm, and always knows what to do in given situations,” Sawatzky said.

Gipson returns fresh off a 2022 campaign where she recorded a batting average of .296 and on-base percentage of .377.

“She played a very important role last year,” Sawatzky said. “She quietly goes about her job, but it never seems to fail that she comes up with a big hit or a big play at a key point in the game.”

More returnees for the Eagles include juniors Claire Borstad and Isabel Gerdes, who is injured with a left torn ACL, and sophomore Kendyl Shelstad.

Borstad recorded a .219 average and Kendyl Shelstad held a .311 average with 14 hits — eight singles, five doubles and a home run in 2022.

LQPV Eagles schedule

April 15 at Wabasso Tournament, 9 a.m.

April 18 vs. MACCRAY, 4:30 p.m. (DH)


April 20 at Russell-Tyler-Ruthton, 4:30 p.m.

April 25 vs. YME, 4:30 p.m.

April 27 at Tracy-Milroy-Balaton, 4:30 p.m.

May 2 vs. Dawson-Boyd, 4:30 p.m. (DH)

May 4 vs. KMS, 4:30 p.m. (DH)

May 9 at Lakeview, 4:30 p.m.

May 11 at Canby/Minneota, 4:30 p.m.

May 13 at Marshall Invitational, 10 a.m.


May 16 vs. Renville County West, 4:30 p.m. (DH)

May 19 at Ortonville, 4:30 p.m. (DH)

Michael Lyne joined the West Central Tribune as a sports reporter in May 2022, following his graduation from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, where he graduated with a bachelors degree in journalism and a minor degree in Spanish studies.

You may reach Michael at, or by calling (320) 214-4345.
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