Softball: Elks beat Blaine 5-1, close conference with 4-game win streak, 10-10 record

Elk River softball heads into playoffs on a four-game win streak after defeating the Andover Huskies 5-1 there Thursday in the NWSC finale.

Anna Pipenhagen pitched a complete-game win for the fourth straight day of a busy week, spacing out seven hits and four walks, leaving 10 Huskies on base. She struck out seven.

Jayme Langebehn was 3-for-4  with a triple and RBI for the Elks. Jess Neuman was 2-for-4 (RBI), Courtney Jensen 2-for-4 (RBI), Bethany Athey 2-for-4, Ali Krohn 2-for-2, Michaela Bruns 1-for-4 (RBI), and Kathi Opsahl 1-for-4 (double, RBI).

Maddie Bittner took the loss for Andover (6-10 conference, 8-11 overall), giving up four runs in 4 1/3 innings. She was 2-for-4 with an RBI at the plate.

The Elks were 5-10 at one point but wrapped up their regular-season schedule at 10-10 and pushed above .500 in the NWSC with a final 8-7 mark. In four games this week, the Elks banged out 47 hits and scored 34 runs in the previous three so their 13-hit attack Thursday was mild by comparison.

“I think the girls are figuring it out, and they’re in a groove now after getting more familiar with each other,” said coach Stacey Sheetz.

The Elks were hoping for a high enough seed in Section 8AAA to get one home game when playoffs start Wednesday.

‘We knew we had to win all for, and have other teams lose,” said Sheetz. “So we’ll see.”

The playoff pairings will be set up Sunday.