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CSB: Augie Starts Conference Play Off Strong

April 7, 2014, 11:05 PM by Cat Clark

CSB: Augie Starts Conference Play Off Strong
SIOUX FALLS, SD -

The Augustana softball team spent the weekend sweeping another two NSIC foes, improving the team's home record to 8-0.

The Vikings put themselves on the map this season in their first game by knocking off the nation’s top ranked team, Central Oklahoma. Augie has carried that momentum to a 27-6 record, good enough to be ranked 13th in the country.

"I think it boosted a lot of our confidence. It puts a target on our backs, so we definitely have to bring our best game," Vikings Senior OF Erin Kempf said.

Augie's best game usually starts with their leader Janelle Trautmann. She needs only four home runs to break the school's home run record, but it's her arm, along with Sophomore Carley Pickett, that keeps the other team off the scoreboard. Skipper Gretta Melsted's squad is out scoring their conference foes 87 to 23 this season.

"We have a very good pitching staff with three great kids," Augustana Manager Gretta Melsted said. "Janelle Trautmann has had to brunt the load over the last couple years. She is really tough pitcher to face. We try to use polar opposites and Carley Pickett is the polar opposite of Janelle. Those two are a tough combination for teams to face in a game or a weekend series."

The Vikings have swept four of their six NSIC series thus far and have ten run ruled four of them. The scary thing is this team is only getting better.

"It definitely feels good and it helps us know that we have been doing the right things in the off season. At the same time we know we still need to get better each day by working on the things we need to work on," Vikings Sophomore Pitcher Carley Pickett said.

The Vikings won't have to travel far to play rival USF in a twin-bill Wednesday, at Sherman Park. The first pitch is scheduled for 3:00.

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