Cyclones open fall slate with a win

Zach Gourley

The ISU softball team started off its brief fall campaign with an 8-2 win against DMACC-Boone in Ames at the Southwest Athletic Complex on Sunday.

Junior Tori Torrescano got the start for the Cyclones, pitching three scoreless innings and striking out five batters before being replaced.

ISU coach Stacy Gemeinhardt-Cesler used four pitchers in all, rotating players frequently in hopes of giving younger players a taste of game experience.

“I think any game opportunities we can get for them in, it’s going to be great for us, especially when there’s so many new players,” Gemeinhardt-Cesler said. “We’ve really just had one week of team practice. We had a lot of young people that did a lot of good things.”

The Cyclones got on the board first with a sacrifice fly by junior first baseman Erica Miller that brought center fielder Heidi Kidwell home.

Miller led the Cyclones in RBIs last year with 40, while also hitting 11 home runs.

In the bottom of the fourth inning, the Cyclones manufactured another run when Madison Tibben scored on an RBI single by Kelsey Enslin.

The Bears responded with two runs of their own in the top of the fifth to tie the score at 2-2.

Gemeinhardt-Cesler had multiple freshmen who saw the first collegiate action of their careers on the field at this stage of the game for the Cyclones.

“It was good for them to go in and not be going in during a blowout,” Torrescano said.”It’s always good for them to go in when it’s still close. A little bit of pressure is always good.”

In the bottom of the sixth, Tibben bunted safe for the Cyclones, followed by walks for Lexi Slater and Dalyn Varela to load the bases with two outs.

Miller stepped to the plate and drilled a shot to right-center, which drove in all three runners to the plate to give the Cyclones a 5-2 lead.

The Cyclones added three more insurance runs in the seventh, highlighted by a Heidi Kidwell triple that brought two runners home.

“I think offensively, I would have liked to see us come out and be a little better out of the gate, but it’s definitely not going to be perfect on the first day,” Gemeinhardt-Cesler said.