Beavers open NSIC slate against SMSU and No. 13 MSU
Friday, March 23, 2012
Beavers open NSIC slate against SMSU and No. 13 MSU

BEMIDJI, Minn. - The Bemidji State University softball team will open Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference play this weekend at the BSU softball field with games against Southwest Minnesota State University and No. 13 Minnesota State University, Mankato. The weekend will open with games against the Mustangs Saturday at 2 and 4 p.m. and concluded with contests versus the Mavericks Sunday at 12 and 2 p.m.

The Beavers have opened Rick Supinski’s first season as head coach with a 6-9 overall mark, the best record for BSU since opening the 2009 season with a 7-8 mark. Saturday’s doubleheader against Southwest Minnesota State will serve as the first games for the Beavers since the conclusion of a 12-game spring break trip in Clermont, Fla March 4-9. Bemidji State concluded the trip with a 4-7 record including wins over Hannibal LaGrange University, Simmons College, Post University and Saint Vincent College. BSU has been guided this season by strong pitching led by senior Courtney Anderson (RHP, Virginia, Minn.) who recorded a no-hitter against Saint Vincent College March 7 and was an error away from a perfect game. Anderson comes into Saturday with a 2.57 earned runs average in 46.1 innings pitched. She is 3-4 on the season and has 63 strikeouts, already tying her mark for the entire season as a freshman in 2009. Anderson has been aided by southpaw Kelsey Saralampi (Jr., Esko, Minn.) and freshman Allison Roberts (RHP, Crystal, Minn.). Saralampi has a 4.96 ERA in 18.1 innings while Roberts has a 6.44 ERA in 29.1 innings.

At the plate, Bemidji State has been led by a pair of freshman, Summer Monsrud (OF, Bemidji, Minn.) and Cassie MacArthur (RHP/1B, Cottage Grove, Minn.). MacArthur has a .391 batting average in 23 at bats wtih three runs batted in and three runs scored. Monsrud boasts a .349 average in 43 at bats with eight runs scored and four stolen bases. In addition, junior third baseman Crystal Bowen (Duluth, Minn.) is hitting at a .303 clip with three RBI while junior second baseman Kayla Babinski (Devils Lake, N.D.) has a .227 batting average with six RBI and six runs scored.

Scouting Southwest Minnesota State
The Mustangs bring a 9-7 overall mark to Bemidji for Saturday’s doubleheader. They are coming off a doubleheader sweep against Wayne State College (Neb.) Tuesday. Southwest Minnesota State is led in the circle by Chelsey Evans, who is 4-2 with a 2.38 ERA in 50 innings pitched this season. Opponents are hitting .250 against Evans this season. In addition, SMSU has Rachel Hoeppner, who is 4-4 with a 3.76 ERA in 35.1 innings.

At the plate, Kris Penick leads the way for the Mustangs with a .442 batting average in 52 at bats. Penick has five runs batted in, eight runs scored and four stolen bases. Amy Dreesen and Christine Borowiak have also gotten off to strong starts. Dreesen boasts a .366 average with seven RBI and seven runs scored while Borowiak is hitting at a .353 clip with eight RBI and 11 runs scored.

Bemidji State last defeated Southwest Minnesota State April 10, 2009 in a 3-1 decision in Marshall, Minn.

Scouting Minnesota State
The No. 13 Mavericks are 20-5 on the season and are fresh off an appearance in the 2011 NCAA Division II Softball Championship. Minnesota State’s pitching staff is paced by senior Kendra Huettl, who was a NFCA Second Team All-Region pick a season ago. Huettl is 10-3 with a 1.29 ERA and 106 strikeouts this season. In addition, the Mavericks have Courtney McKelvogue in the circle, who as a junior is 7-2 with a 1.34 ERA.

At the plate, Minnesota State is led by all-american Lindsay Erickson, a sophomore who is hitting at a .364 clip with four home runs and 13 RBI. In addition, the Mavericks have freshman Brittani Robinson, who has a .310 average with four home runs and 16 RBI in her first season with the program.