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Softball: Hits not falling for Irish

Rosemount softball coach Tiffany Rose has stressed the importance of getting more offense from her team.

The Irish have averaged 1.6 runs a game this season while starting 0-5. And Rosemount isn't getting many opportunities to break through against opposing pitchers with five games having been postponed at one time or another.

Last week the Irish lost 4-3 against Eden Prairie after having two games postponed. On Monday, Rosemount lost 3-1 at home against Lakeville South.

"It's the story of our lives," Rose said of the offensive struggles.

The good news for Rose and the Irish is the quality of the at-bats has improved and could lead to more scoring.

"The great news is the swings are very good right now," Rose said. "The girls are hitting the ball hard; it's just not falling for us. We've had some great line drives going right at people. We keep working. We have to be patient and I know it will come.

"The at-bats are quality and we're doing some great things at the plate. We're having successful bunts. We're always moving the runners over and getting walks. The at-bats have been better. We just need a person to step up. Whether it's the third hitter or the eighth hitter, we need someone to step up and get a big hit and we have to string them together."

Rosemount scratched for its three runs against Eden Prairie last week. With the Eagles holding a 1-0 lead, the Irish came back to score two runs, but it wasn't easy.

Paige Cero had a single and Laura Bodurtha reached on an error. Rachel Hoeppner bunted the runners over. With two walks and a sacrifice fly, Rosemount scored two runs in the inning.

The small-ball approach is what the Irish have had to turn to.

Bodurtha had two hits and a run. Ally Baker had a hit and an RBI. Melissa Seldon was 1 for 1 with two sacrifices and an RBI.

"In the seventh we loaded the bases with two outs but didn't put a run across," Rose said.

Against Lakeville South, Cero and Bodurtha each had two hits.

Hoeppner pitched for the Irish and had one of her top games of the season. She allowed three runs on five hits and had five strikeouts.

"We talked after the game and told the team how Rachel would have had to hold them scoreless to win that game," Rose said. "It's tough to win in high school softball, especially with the pitchers throwing from 43 feet. We were much better (Monday), but we're waiting to get for that lucky hit to score runs.

"Rachel pitched very well."