Considering a handful of players aren't from Minnesota, the Lady Comets are taking the turn in weather and forcing native Minnesotans off the field.
The past three games ended early for the Comets after they outscored opponents by over 10 runs after five frames. The past two games were played in sub-60 degree weather, where the crack of the bat shatters wrists as it breaks the silence on the field. But the Lady Comets have made Minnesotan teams not want to play. Their 8-2 record is good enough for a share of the conference title so far, and with two non-conference teams left on their schedule the girls are guaranteed a share of the trophy with Brandon-Evansville, unless the Chargers lose one of their final two contests and hand the trophy solely to the Comets.
Friday's game blew frigid air across the infield, causing tears to flow from Nicole DeKok who stood on the mound and dominated in spite of the blistering wind. DeKok was in rare form, taking her aggression for the weather out on the strike zone. She struck out 11 in Graceville, giving up a meager 2 hits in her 5 inning shutout.
DeKok walked to the dugout two times before the Comets blew the game open in the third. Watching their pitcher classically laying down Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley, the Comets sent 14 batters to the plate in the third inning. After batting through the order, the Lady Comets grabbed their gloves having posted 9 runs to the scoreboard. They only needed to bat 5 times before boarding the bus in their 5 inning outing.
DeKok didn't want to leave the field. Hitting seems more fun in the cold for her. After going 2 for 4 in the afternoon, she drove home 3 teammates and stole 2 bases. When Nicole wasn't cranking the ball to the grass and sending Clinton players to their bench with drooping shoulders she was watching Emma Royce take the leather off the ball. Royce went 3 for 4 and added 2 RBIs and 2 stolen bases.
The Comets were heating-up the base path throughout the afternoon. State record steals holder Megan Aasness added 3 to her tally, giving her 40 steals on the year. She is 1 shy of tying her state record of 41. Aasness went 2 for 4 batting, scoring twice. Behind Aasness, Sophie Iverson gritted her teeth in working to send Aasness around the base path. Iverson went 2 for 3, scoring 3 times.
The Lady Comets play two non-conference games to close their season. Tuesday they travel to Barrett, MN to play West Central Area, and Friday, May 20 they play in Barnesville. The girls will watch the wire to see if rival Brandon-Evansville falls in their Monday afternoon game against Wheaton/Herman-Norcross, or Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley, mimicking the Comet's schedule next week.