Aberdeen was the host for the inaugural sanctioned state tournaments for high school girls softball this past weekend.
Last November, the SDHSAA board of directors officially adopted girls high school softball as a sanctioned sport in South Dakota, and then in January of this year, a decision was made to make it a spring sport. The Mt. Rushmore state was the last state in the nation to sanction high school girls softball.
In its inaugural season, Lennox High School’s softball team earned a spot at the State A Tournament, held June 1-3.
The Orioles opened their State run with a match-up against top seeded Dell Rapids. The Quarriers jumped out to a quick 8-1 lead after the opening inning and never looked back, taking the 21-5 victory over Lennox in three innings of play.
Alicen Oltmanns handled pitching duties for Lennox. She allowed 21 hits, 21 runs and recorded three strike-outs.
Recording hits for Lennox were Macey Wallenstein, Makinleigh Wallenstein, Aleeah Oltmanns, Alicen Oltmanns, Carlee Gabriel, and Danica Van Ningen.
With the early loss, the Orioles dropped down to the consolation bracket where they faced off against Madison.
Once again the Orioles found themselves facing a deficit as Madison racked up a 10-0 lead after the opening inning. Lennox scored one run in the top of the third and one more in the top of the fourth, but the Bulldogs went on to take the 15-2 victory over 4-1/2 innings of play.
Alicen Oltmanns started the game on the mound, allowing ten runs on six hits. She struck out two batters and walked zero. Makinleigh Wallenstein pitched three and a third innings in relief. She allowed nine hits and five runs. She recorded five strike-outs in the game.
The loss placed Lennox against Beresford in the seventh/eighth place game.
Lennox jumped to an early 2-0 lead after the opening inning of play. The game stayed close until Beresford scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth and another four in the bottom of the sixth, going on to take the 10-5 victory, giving the Orioles eighth place.
In the opening inning, Alicen Oltmanns hit a double to give the Orioles an early lead. Also recording hits for Lennox were Makinleigh Wallenstein, Macy Wallenstein, Madison Buehner, and Aleeah Oltmanns.
On the mound for Lennox was Makinleigh Wallenstein who pitched six innings, allowing ten runs on 11 hits and striking out ten. Wallenstein earned All Tournament team honors for her performance throughout the weekend.
Winning the State A Championship title was West Central who defeated Tea Area 4-0 in the title game.