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National power Itasca escapes CLC

GRAND RAPIDS — Sixth-ranked Itasca (30-6) scored four runs in the bottom of the ninth to edge the
Central Lakes College Raiders softball team, 10-9, in the second game of a
doubleheader Wednesday. CLC led 9-6 into the bottom of the ninth but couldn’t protect the lead. The loss overshadowed a big offensive game for CLC, which ripped 20 hits in
the nightcap. Carlie Sweet was 5 for 5 with four RBIs and a home run. Kaylie Hanson
was 4-5, Jenni Smolke (shown) and Alanna Hansen each had three hits and Nicole Marcy
added two. Smolke homered and drove in three runs. Losing pitcher Sam Harting walked three and struck out three. Itasca won the opener, 5-1, taking a 3-0 lead in the first inning. Kaylie Hanson and
Desirae Guscette each had two hits. On the mound Sam Harting allowed just two earned
runs, walked one and struck out one. Division: CLC 10-8. Overall: CLC 11-14. Next: CLC in Crossover Tournament at
Cloquet Saturday-Sunday. Tournament replaces traditional state tournament. Half of MCAC teams play similar tournament at Austin this weekend. Saturday at Cloquet ( where the 8 teams are CLC, Anoka-Ramsey, St. Cloud, Ridgewater, MSCTC-Fergus Falls, Fond du Lac, Rainy River, Mesabi Range): CLC vs. St. Cloud Tech & Comm, 2 p.m., Field 4 at Braun Park, vs.  MSCTC, 4 p.m., Field 4. Sunday: CLC vs. Ridgewater, 10 a.m., Field 3, vs. Anoka-Ramsey, noon, Field 3.

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