By Bruce Strand
Elk River Star News
St. Michael-Albertville nipped the Rogers Royals 2-1 Monday, the Knights’ second close win over the Royals in conference play.
Alex Berg pitched in and out of trouble to earn the win for the Knights, striking out none while spacing out four hits and five walks. Rogers left eight runners on base.
Bianca Zins knocked in both Knight runs with a double in the sixth inning. Rogers led 1-0 on an RBI hit by Madi Anderson in the fifth inning.
Katelyn Kemmetmueller struck out 10 for Rogers, while giving up seven hits and one walk.
The Royals are 2-2 in conference, also losing to the Knights 5-4 on April 30, and are 5-3 overall. STMA is 4-0 in conference.
In earlier action, the Royals handed Duluth Denfeld its first loss 1-0, then got blanked by another strong team, Lakeville North, 10-0 on Saturday at the Rosemount Dome.
The Royals (5-2) were scheduled to play in a Sauk Rapids tournament which was canceled due to weather, but were able to schedule two indoor games instead.
Against Duluth Denfeld, Katelyn Kemmetmueller pitched her second straight 1-0 win, a three-hitter with one walk and nine strikeouts. She also scored the lone run after leading off the fourth with a double. She was bunted to third by Maddie Mickolich and came home on a two-out infield error.
Ashley Taipale spun a five-hitter for Denfeld and Alexis Klass had all three hits for the Hunters. Getting a hit each for Rogers were Olivia Olson, Kemmetmueller, Emily Hanford, Madi Grady and Abbie Lien.
Rogers handed Denfeld (7-1) its first loss. The Hunters had handed Lakeville North (9-1) its first loss 4-2 on Friday night.
“After a very emotional we’ll played game against Duluth, we just seemed worn out against Lakeville,” said Chris Donnay, Rogers assistant coach. “They did everything right from base running to playing small ball and that set up their hitting.”
Lakeville North scored three runs (two earned) in the first off Kemmetmueller, and Emma Swanson pitched the rest of the game, giving up six runs in four innings.
Ericka Rozell was 3-for-3 with a double, two stolen bases and three RBI for the Panthers, and Sara Nelson 3-for-4 with two RBI. Panther pitcher Maggie Dummitt limited Rogers to two hits, with Elli Anderson and Mickolich each 1-for-2.
Rogers was to play at Cambridge-Isanti Tuesday.