CHEROKEE - Cherokee may have scored first, but Estherville Lincoln Central scored the next 12 runs on the way to a 12-1 victory over the Braves on Monday.
The Midgets scored eight runs in the fourth inning highlighted by a three-run home run by Kristen King that put ELC up 11-1.
Cherokee starting pitcher Brookelyn Hoeppner struggled through three innings giving up six hits while walking five batters and hitting five.
ELC's Carson Gjerde was more efficient. After walking the first batter she faced, she gave the Braves no more free passes while striking out three batters and giving up just five hits.
"Carson settled into the game after walking the first batter and I think she threw harder as the game went on," said ELC coach Megan Anderson. "I had all confidence in her pitching and getting a win for us tonight."
ELC's Emily Kirchner made the play of the night for the second out of the second inning. She dove to the left to snag a grounder hit by Erin Kelley and made the throw to first baseman Megan Jensen from her knees. Kirchner had four put-outs in the game and caught two pop ups.
Cherokee scored the first run of the game when Megan Hummel drew the leadoff walk in the first inning. Kaely Hummel and Grace Tuesink then hit consecutive singles to score the run. But moments later, Hummel was picked off trying to go to third on Tuesink's hit.
ELC's offense stalled in the first two innings with players running into tags.
But Macy Dahl led off the third inning with second, went to second on a sacrifice by Gjerde and scored on a double by Emily Kirchner. Krichner went to third base when Jensen grounded out to third and then scored on a wild pitch. With two outs and the bases cleared, Caitlyn Clayton, Sarah Schacherer and Joslyn Moore all drew walks to load the bases and Clayton scored on a wild pitch before the Braves got the final out.
King started the fourth inning when she was hit by a pitch. Dahl had an infield single and the runners advanced on a wild pitch. Gjerde was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Kirchner hit a hard grounder , which she turned into a triple while bring three runs home.. Jensen and Clayton then hit consecutive RBI doubles before the Braves finally got an out. Moore was then hit by a pitch and Cherokee replaced Hoeppner with Emily Haselhoff.
Hasselhof got Rachel Bates to pop out to third base. But then King stepped to the plate and sent the ball over the left-field fence.
"That should give her some confidence," said Anderson. "We need her bat in the lineup."
ELC added a un in the fifth. Gjerde and Kirchner hit consecutive singles and Jensen drew a walk to load the bases. A sacrifice fly to left field by Clayton scored Gjerde.
At the plate, Kirchner finished 3-4 with four RBIs. Dahl was 2-3. Gjerde was 1-1 with two sacrifice bunts. Clayton was 1-1 with two RBIs. King was 1-2 with three RBIs.
ELC (12-5 overall, 6-2 Lakes) hosts Western Christian on Wednesday.
The ELC Junior Varsity won 16-9 over Cherokee on Monday.
Megan Jensen pitched four innings in earning the win. She gave up four earned runs on three hits with one strikeout and two walks. Rylee Miller pitched one inning and gave up five runs (three earned) on one hit with five walks.
At the plate, Jensen was 3-4 with three RBIs and three runs; Madison Rimmer was 2-2 with two doubles and two runs; Jordan Phillips was 2-3 with a run; Sadie Rosenboom was 1-3 with three RBIs and two runs and Colleen Humble was 2-3 with two runs.