Dowagiac’s Sierra Herter, seen here in action from last season, had a double in the first game and drove in a run in the nightcap as the Chieftains split their season opener at Decatur Monday afternoon. (Daily News Photo/File)

Archived Story

Dowagiac splits with Decatur

Published 11:06pm Monday, March 26, 2012

DECATUR — The Dowagiac softball team split a pair of games with Decatur Monday afternoon in its season opener.

The Chieftains dropped the first game to the Raiders 8-2, but rallied with a pair of runs in the sixth inning to take the nightcap 12-11.

Dowagiac (1-1) had eight hits in the opening game, but could not overcome three errors.

McKenzie Herter was 2-for-4, while Rachel Bailey was 2-for-3 with an RBI. Kristyn Turner also drove in a run and Sierra Herter had a double.

Katie Ward started for Dowagiac and took the loss with relief help from Tori Smith.

In the nightcap, the Chieftains pounded out 19 hits, including four by freshman catcher Kourtney Mitchell. Mitchell had a double and three RBIs for Dowagiac.

Turner added three hits, a double and three RBIs. Taylor Meiser, who was the starting pitcher in the second game, also finished with three hits and an RBI.

Amanda Craft, Smith and Shelby Huston each had two hits, Craft and Sierra Herter both drove in runs.

Smith picked up the victory in relief.

“As a whole we didn’t play all that bad tonight” Dowagiac coach Mike Behnke said. “We are young and I knew we would make mistakes, but we have to cut down on the silly mistakes. We weren’t able to overcome those mistakes in game one, but our bats came alive in game two to overcome the mistakes we made in the field.

“We were looking for a catcher in the off-season and freshman Kourtney Mitchell stepped up and played good games defensively and offensively including a bases loaded, two-out, three RBI double in the second. Our other two freshmen did well too. Tori Smith came in late to both games and pitched well to keep us in the games and picked up the win in game two, and McKenzie Herter had two hits in game one.  Junior Shelby Huston also played well in left field and had two hits in game two. All in all we have to play better defense and cut down on the silly mistakes and know where we are going with the ball on every play.”

At Decatur

First game

Dowagiac 101 000 0 — 2 8 3

Decatur 004 031 x — 8 11 0

E. Southworth (W) and C. Knight; Katie Ward (L, 0-1), Tori Smith (5) and Kourtney Mitchell

2B: T. Gailhouse (DEC), A. Vallejo (DEC), Sierra Herter (DOW)

3B: D. Rassmussen (DEC)

Second game

Dowagiac 300 162 0 — 12 19 3

Decatur 103 520 0 — 11 10 2

Taylor Meiser, Tori Smith (W, 1-0)  and Kourtney Mitchell; E. Southworth (L), T. Gailhouse (4) and C. Knight

2B: Knight (DEC), Sierra Herter (DOW), Kristyn Turner (DOW), Mitchell (DOW)

Varsity records

Dowagiac 1-1, Decatur 1-1

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