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DL softball hit with late slump

An untimely rut in the form of a five-game losing streak has been hit by the Detroit Lakes softball team, which unfortunately has plummeted the Lakers down the Section 8-2A seedings.

DL, which now stands at 9-10 on the season, dropped four close Mid-State games, and fell to Thief River Falls Thursday by the score of 13-5.

The good sign heading into the Section playoffs is the pitching has been solid, carried by a pair of sophomores in Cady Cartmell and Callea Butz.

Defense also has been solid for the most part, as well, with the hitting needing to be improved for a good playoff run, said DL head coach Phil Kirchner.

"For one, we need to be error-free, because good teams take advantage of errors," Kirchner said. "We need to get our bats going, though."

Kirchner estimated the Lakers will end up with the sixth or seventh seed, which means a road game Tuesday for the opening of the playoffs. Crookston is a possible destination, Kirchner added.

Cartmell pitched Thursday against the visiting Thief River Falls Prowlers. Both she and the defense struggled, with Cartmell giving up 12 hits and eight walks, while the defense had five errors.

"Thief River Falls is the favorite in the section and is a good-hitting team," Kirchner said. "We just had too many errors and walks."

Catcher Brittany Larson was the lone Laker to gain over one hit, going 2-4, while the Lakers finished with seven hits.

DL dropped a pair of close games in Perham Wednesday, losing by identical scores of 2-1.

Butz pitched well enough to win -- accumulating 14 strikeouts in both games and only three walks -- but a couple of untimely errors (all four of Perham's runs were unearned) coupled with some silent bats led to the sweep by the Yellowjackets.

The second game of the doubleheader in Perham was only five innings, due to both teams' heavy schedule with five games in three days.

The Lakers' bad stretch started in some miserable cold weather Tuesday, with Staples-Motley visiting Snappy Park.

The Cardinals vanquished the Lakers by a pair of 6-2 losses.

Butz struck out 10 in the first game, but DL had two errors leading to three unearned runs.

Cartmell took the loss in the nightcap, as DL had only six hits, with Braun once again going for two and finishing 4-7 on the day.