Pushing all the right buttons, the St. Edmond softball team jumped back into the win column here Wednesday night at Rogers Sports Complex.
The Gaels (10-4 overall, 6-3 NCC) notched a 7-1 North Central Conference triumph over Hampton-Dumont.
Freshman Jaci Stumpf, senior Lexi Peed and freshman Brigid Hanley all collected a pair of hits for SEHS, which swept the season series from the Bulldogs (8-5, 7-4). Stumpf and sophomore Cassie Sells each scored twice, while Peed drove in a pair.
"It was nice to see us come out right away and hit the ball, especially the bottom of our order (the SEHS No. 7, 8 and 9 hitters finished 3-for-8 with two runs and two RBI)," St. Edmond head coach Paul Hunt said. "I was very happy with how we swung the bats (Wednesday). Our younger girls are starting to really step up for us right now."
After gaining an early advantage on a Hanley two-out RBI single up the middle in the bottom of the second, the Gaels tacked on three more insurance scores in the their next at-bat. Sells (single) and Peed (double) both plated runs in the frame for the green and white. Peed, a third baseman and No. 3 hitter, also crossed the dish on a wild pitch.
"Our team definitely had a different feel to it (last evening) compared to (Monday's 3-2 nine-inning setback at defending NCC champion Webster City)," said Hunt. "We knew how important this game was and came out prepared and with more focus."
ST. EDMOND 7, HAMPTON-DUMONT 1
Hampton-Dumont 000 000 1-1 5 4
St. Edmond 013 102 x-7 9 4
Michelle Ritland (L; 6 IP, 9 H, 7 R, 6 ER, 1 BB, 6 K) and Kylie Murphy; Katie Donnelly (W, 9-2; 7 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K) and Jessica Kuebler.
2B-SE: Lexi Peed, Brigid Hanley, Jaci Stumpf. 3B-SE: Stumpf. Multiple hits-H-D: Taryn Barz (2); SE: Stumpf (2), Peed (2), Hanley (2). Multiple RBI-SE: Peed (2). SB-SE: Stumpf (2), Cassie Sells (2), Peed. LOB-H-D: 7; SE: 6. DP-H-D: 1.
Ace junior right-hander Katie Donnelly (9-2) went the distance in the circle for SEHS, scattering five hits, no earned runs, no walks and five strikeouts. The Fort Dodge Senior High transfer fired 69 of her 105 pitches for strikes.
"Katie threw strikes and was in control of the game," Hunt said. "We've been emphasizing getting ahead in the count, which she was able to do."
Despite committing four errors in the contest, the Gaels went a perfect 5-for-5 in stolen bases.
Taryn Barz was 2-for-3 for Hampton-Dumont, while pinch runner Shelby Tidman came home with the lone Bulldog run on a two-out throwing error by the Gael first baseman in the seventh inning.
Next action for St. Edmond is Friday at the Fort Dodge Invitational. The Gaels will face fifth-ranked (Class 4A) and defending 3A state runner-up Winterset (14-6) in their opener at 1 p.m.