Hopkins’ Morgan Dykstra (15) and her teammates fell to Hamilton. (Photo by Marilyn Martin)

Hamilton cruises past Hopkins in weather-shortened contest

By: 
Leo Martonosi

Rain, thunder and lightning wasn’t the only thing that did in the Hopkins softball team on Thursday, May 16.
“That’s a very good well-coached team,” said Viking coach Amy Funk after Hamilton won a rain-shortened 10-1 decision over Hopkins.
The non-league contest was delayed three times—90 total minutes—because of poor weather conditions. The officials called the game in the top of the fifth inning with the Hawkeyes staked to their big lead.
“We let the game slip away early and couldn’t recover against a very good team like Hamilton that didn’t commit an error,” Funk said. “We also struggled to put runs on the board and had a tough time defensively containing Hamilton’s offense.”
The Hawkeyes flexed their muscles in the bottom of the first inning, scoring five times. Hailey VanHuis blasted a long three-run home run, while Riki Ediger, who also stars in volleyball and in basketball, doubled.
Funk was impressed with the pitching of Chloe DeJonge, who struck out six of the first seven batters she faced and nine for the game.
“I don’t want to make excuses, but we haven’t seen that pitching speed since we played Onaway,” Funk said
Sierra Smith and Haleigh Miller each drilled doubles off the hard-throwing DeJonge, while mustering singles were Maddie Wyngarden, Hannah Wubben and Maddie Schans.
Hamilton finished with 10 hits. Collecting multiple hits for Hamilton were VanHuis and DeJonge.
VanHuis, a gifted offensive and defensive catcher for Hamilton, had a game-high 10 fielding chances.
“This was definitely a bummer that we couldn’t keep playing, but it will be good for us leading into districts,” Funk said.
Hamilton improved to15-8 for the season and Hopkins fell to 18-7.
“This season has been great,” said Hamilton coach Brian Morrison. “We have strong senior leadership, hard working underclassman, supportive parents and positive influences in our coaching staff. That has all combined to make this season a great experience for our young women.
“We focus only on our progress, not wins and losses. We will win and lose. Those are givens. However, using softball to teach life lessons such as hard work, mental toughness, leadership and dealing with success and failures is what we pride ourselves on in our program. We firmly believe this is the intention of high school athletics.”
 

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