Cougar softball takes third at Hayfield Tourney

Lexi Thorson hit two home runs and a triple while driving in seven runs for the Cougars during Monday's double header against Onalaska Luther. EPPS/NEWS LEADER

The Mabel-Canton softball team was busy during the second-to-last week of the regular season. The Cougars lost the first game, of a May 8 doubleheader, at Randolph 8-3 before the second game was suspended in the first inning and likely not to be made up.

The Cougars went 2-1 in the Hayfield Tournament on Saturday, May 11, beating Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop and New-Richland-Heartland-Ellendale-Geneva and losing to Carlton, finishing in third place.

Just prior to the News Leader deadline, Mabel-Canton (9-5 overall, 2-3 SEC) dropped a May 14 non-conference game at Lewiston-Altura, 10-5. Look for full coverage next week.

Loss at Randolph 8-3

The first five-inning game of a scheduled doubleheader was played in the rain from start to finish before the second game, due to field conditions, was suspended in the first inning with Randolph leading 2-0.

The first two batters of the first game scored for visiting M-C, but Randolph replied quickly with four runs in the bottom of the first inning, including a two-RBI home run by freshman Megan Erickson.

Freshman Morgyn Otte pitched a three-hitter for Randolph, but two hits came as the Cougars added a run to make it 5-3 Randolph in the third inning.

Lexi Thorson doubled and came around to score on a single by Kenidi McCabe. The other M-C hit was a game-opening single by Hannah Snell.

Eight batters helped the home team bang out 10 hits, including the extra-base pop of three doubles and a triple. The only Rocket senior, Skyler Turek, (double, three RBIs) and Mackenna Otte (triple) each batted two for two.

Randolph remained undefeated at 10-0 overall and the lone team unbeaten in SEC play at 7-0. It’s been a good run for the Rockets, who have won all three conference softball championships since joining the SEC.

M-C  201  00 - 3  3  3

Ran  420  2x - 8  10  1

LOB: M-C 5, Ran 4

WP- Otte, LP- H. McCabe

McCabe 4 IP, 3H, 8R, 7ER, 3K, 4

Otte 5 IP, 3H, 3R, 2ER, 7K, 4W

Third in Hayfield Tourney

Win vs. G--FW 13-4

The Cougars began the tournament as Harley McCabe pitched a two-hitter while the Cougars belted 18 hits, including two home runs and four doubles.

Snell tied the score with a two-RBI shot over the fence in the second inning. In the same inning, Thorson doubled home the go-ahead run.

Two-baggers by Kenidi McCabe and Emily Carolan came during a four-run rally that put M-C up 7-2 in the third inning.

A two-run double by Lauren Wyffels and a two-run Thorson blast over the fence came during the six-run eruption in the final fifth inning (10-run rule).

Nine Cougars had base hits, led by Thorson, who batted four for four with five RBIs; Kenidi McCabe went three for four.

Wyffels (two RBIs), Harley McCabe (RBI) and Payton Danielson (RBI) each went two for three at the plate while Jordyn Newgard (two RBIs) was two for four. Snell and Carolan also hit safely.

Gibbon-Fairfax -Winthrop would go on to drop all three tourney games and leave at 1-13.

M-C  034  06 -13  18  1

GFW 200  02 - 4    2   1

LOB: M-C 8, GFW 4

WP- H. McCabe, LP- Nachreiner

McCabe 5 IP, 2H, 4R, 4ER, 5K, 6W

Nachreiner 5 IP, 13R, 12ER, 0K, 4W

Loss to Carlton 7-6 (6 inn.)

The Cougars may feel they gave away a couple of runs that cost the game. Likely the most memorable were the tying and winning runs both scoring with bases-loaded walks in the final sixth inning (time limit). But, two M-C errors allowing two unearned runs in the fifth were equally damaging in the semi-final setback. Of the seven Bulldogs who scored, three had reached base on errors

The Cougars didn’t help themselves, finishing with five errors and left 10 runners on base. Carlton committed two errors and stranded only four.

This semi-final would be the closest game of the day for Carlton (10-2), which had opened with an 11-1 win over Houston and would win the championship game 10-6 over host Hayfield.

Each team hit a home run in the first inning, the second fence-clearing blast by Thorson.

M-C broke a 3-3 tie with two runs in the fourth and added one in the fifth to lead 6-3, but Carlton scored two unearned runs in the fifth and won with two runs in the bottom of the final inning. All three Cougar walks came in that final frame, along with an error and an RBI-single.

Thorson batted 2 for 4 with a home run and a triple. Wyffels went 3 for 4 with a double. Kenidi McCabe was 2 for 4 with an RBI-double. Other hits came from Snell (double), Harley McCabe, Danielson, and Maddy Michels.

It was a tough pitching loss for eighth-grader Carolan, who allowed only three earned runs and only six hits in six innings.

Carlton, located near Duluth, was the team farthest from home while playing in the Hayfield Tourney.

M-C  120  210 -6  11  5

CHS  210  022 - 7  6  2

LOB: M-C 10, CHS 4

WP- A. Mickle, L- Carolan

Carolan 5 IP, 6H, 7R, 4ER, 2K, 3W

Mickle 6 IP, 11H, 6R, 4ER, 3K, 2W

Win vs. NRHEG 9-6

In the third-place game, New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva (6-4) out-hit the Cougars 8 to 7 and committed no errors, but M-C took advantage of nine walks and one hit batter. Six Cougars who received free passes would eventually score.

M-C led early 4-1 after a four-run first inning, but then trailed the Panthers 6-5 before re-taking the lead with another four-run inning in the bottom of the fifth.

Four of the seven Cougar hits came in that final four-run rally. Newgard broke a 6-6 tie with a bases-loaded single. With the bases still packed, a Carolan single drove in two more runs.

Wyffels batted two for two and plated four runs with a double, a single, and a bases-loaded walk. Other hits came from Michels (double), McCabe, McCabe, Newgard, and Carolan.

NRHEG  13 0  110 - 6  8  0

M-C        401  04x - 9  7  2


WP- McCabe, LP- Stork

McCabe 6 IP, 8H, 6R, 4ER, 1K, 2W

Johns 0 IP, 0H, 3R, 3ER, 1K, 2W, 1HB

Stork  5 IP, 7H, 6R, 6ER, 6K, 7W


After kicking off the week with a road game at Lewiston-Altura. the Cougars hosted a rare Wednesday doubleheader with Glenville-Emmons/Alden-Conger. M-C ends the regular season on Thursday, 17 with an SEC makeup doubleheader at Rochester versus Schaeffer Academy.

SEC Softball (May 15)

Randolph……...7-0 (14-0 all)

Lyle/Pacelli…....6-1 (8-2)

Houston……….5-4 (8-11)

Mabel-Canton.2-3 (9-6)

G-E/A-C…….…2-6 (2-12)

Schaeffer….…..0-8 (0-8)