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Dickinson splits with Minot Ryan

Press Photo by Dustin Monke Dickinson senior Kelsey Lafond throws to Minot Ryan on Tuesday evening during a West Region doubleheader at the North Softball Complex.

There were two sides to the Dickinson High softball team on Tuesday afternoon.

One was error prone and couldn't find ways to get runners home. The other was smooth and hit the ball wherever it wanted.

That led to doubleheader split against No. 2-ranked Minot Ryan that the No. 5 Midgets were happy to take.

A heavy dose of Ryan freshman pitcher Hannah Stewart flummoxed the Midgets in the opening game. She had 10 strikeouts and scattered five hits with two walks as the Lions earned a 7-0 victory.

The Midgets scored four runs in the fourth inning of the second game to break a 4-4 tie en route to an 8-4 win at the North Softball Complex.

"Even throughout the first game, our bats were improving, slowly getting better," Dickinson senior Kelsey Lafond said. "But come the second game, we really got our bats going. We hit the ball well and our defense came together too."

Lafond earned the victory from the pitcher's circle and had a pair of RBI doubles, including one in the fourth.

Dickinson (17-9, 14-8 West) steadily improved as the day went on, head coach Bill Butterfield said.

"The positives from that first game were we kept getting better, kept getting better throughout the game," he said.

Dickinson's progress spilled over into the second game.

The Midgets had trouble getting into a flow, however, after committing five errors in the first game. Sophomore pitcher Haley Butterfield was saddled with the loss in the first game while striking out four.

Two errors and four passed balls helped the Lions (22-5, 17-5 West) score four runs in the first inning of Game 2.

From there on, the Midgets were just about perfect.

Rachel Jahner's two-run double to center gave Dickinson its first lead, 6-4, and Lafond and Farnsworth each drove in runs.

Lafond was 3-for-4 and scored two runs. Jahner and Farnsworth each went 2-for-4.

Stewart replaced starter Brieann Backes in the fourth and kept the Midgets at bay from there on out.

"We can't depend on Hannah every game," Ryan head coach Fred Mueller said. "We've got to find someone who can shut the door just as well as she can."

Dickinson's lone seniors, Lafond and Beth Honeyman, were honored in between games. Honeyman went 3-for-6 in the doubleheader.

"They really stepped up on senior night," Bill Butterfield said. "That's a lot of pressure put on them on senior night. Boy, they really came through."

Ryan 000 500 2 -- 7 6 0

Dickinson 000 000 0 -- 0 5 5

Hannah Stewart and Maddie Lipp. Haley Butterfield and Lexy Yates. W-Stewart. L-Butterfield. HR-None.

Highlights: Ryan, Stewart 7 IP, 10 K, 2 BB, Sam Smith 2-for-4, 2B, RBI, 2 runs; Anika Rovig 12-for-4, RBI; McKenzie Ebert 1-for-3, run. Dickinson, Briana Farnsworth 2-for-4; Sierra Rohr 2-for-3, 2B; Jess Priebe 1-for-3.

Ryan 400 000 0 -- 4 6 2

Dickinson 211 400 0 -- 8 10 2

Kelsey Lafond, Madison Jahner (6) and Lexi Yates. Brieann Backes, Hannah Stewart (4) and Maddie Lipp. W-Lafond. L-Backes. HR-None.

Highlights: Ryan, Sam Smith 2-for-3, 2 RBI, run; Maddie Lipp 2-for-3, RBI; Anika Rovig 1-for-3, RBI; Brieanna Backes 1-for-3; Sydney Marmon 1-for-3. Dickinson, Rachel Jahner 2-for-4, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 2 runs; Kelsey Lafond 3-for-4, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 2 runs; Brianna Farnsworth 2-for-4, RBI; Beth Honeyman 2-for-3, run; Haley Butterfield 1-for-3.

Records: Dickinson 17-9, 14-8 West; Ryan 22-5, 17-5 West.

Dustin Monke

Monke came to The Dickinson Press in July 2006 as the newspaper's sports editor and was hired as its managing editor in March 2013. During his tenure at The Press, Monke has won multiple awards for sports reporting, feature reporting, column writing, page design and photography. He was a key part of The Press winning the North Dakota Newspaper Association's General Excellence and Sweepstakes awards in 2009 and 2012, and oversaw The Press' Sweepstakes and General Excellence wins in 2014, as well as its national first-place honors for Community Leadership in the Inland Daily Press Association and contributed to the first-place Inland award for Investigative Reporting. As the newspaper's editor, he writes an occasional Sunday column, is a member of The Press' Editorial Board, contributes feature stories and breaking news, designs pages, and oversees the day-to-day operations of the newsroom and editorial staff. In his free time, he enjoys watching sports and action movies, exercises whenever his schedule allows, and spends every minute he can with his wife and son.

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