Walks and errors were costly as Elk River lost its conference opener to Anoka 4-3 on Monday in Anoka.
The Elks led 3-2 going into the last of the seventh, when Anna Pipenhagen issued her seventh and eighth walks to start the inning.
With one out, Anoka’s Morgan Paarerud slapped a single that scored one run, and the other sped home when the ball went under the outfielder’s glove.
“That was brutal. We were ahead all the way,” said coach Stacy Sheetz. “We kind of gave away the other runs, too.”
In the third, Anoka had runners at first and third, and both scored on a baserunning play. The catcher overthrew second, and the outfielder missed the throw.
Pipenhagen gave up seven hits and struck out six. About her eight walks, Sheetz observed, “Anoka’s 3-4-5 hitters are really good, and I think Anna tightened up, and tried to pitch around them.”
The Elks had six hits and three walks off Hailee Gifford, who struck out five.
Alyssa Germscheid was 1-for-3 and knocked in two runs for the Elks (1-1).
The Elks will host Centennial on Tuesday.