Brenna Dickmann hit the cover off the ball last week.
The Pierz junior catcher went 9-12 with two home runs, two doubles and six RBIs in four Pioneers wins last week.
Her week started with a 2-2 performance Monday, May 10, against Mora. She tallied a double and an RBI in the 6-4 win over the Mustangs.
Dickmann then tallied two hits, including a three-run home run, against Milaca Tuesday, May 11, in a 21-0 win that clinched Pierz a share of the Granite Ridge Conference title.
She didn’t slow down at the plate Thursday, May 13, against Osakis when she tallied three hits, including a solo home run, in a 14-1 win.
The week was capped off with Dickmann lacing two hits, including a double, in a 4-3 win over Long Prairie-Grey Eagle. Dickmann also tallied an RBI and stole two bases in the win against LPGE.
Dickmann’s big week bumped her season average to .588. She’s tallied 30 hits, six doubles, three home runs and 22 RBIs total.
“She’s been producing at the plate the whole year,” Pierz head coach Matt Poepping said. “She’s locked in and hits the ball from gap to gap. She doesn’t pull off. She stays in the middle field and that’s probably the biggest thing to her success.”
A goal Dickmann had coming into the season was to keep her average high.
“I just want to get hits for the team,” she said. “Not just home runs or nothing. Just get hits and drive in other runners.”
At the start of the season, Dickmann hit fifth in the Pierz lineup, but as the season progressed Poepping moved her to third in the lineup to get her more at-bats.
“She’s probably been our team leader this year even though she’s a junior,'' Poepping said. “She’s been the one to be vocal when we aren’t playing well or when the energy is low she picks girls up and gets them going.”
Poepping called Dickmann the Pioneers most consistent player at the plate.
“She’s pretty patient,” Poepping said. “She’s not super aggressive on the first pitch. She likes to work the count and take the count as it comes. It seems like the more pitches she sees the more confident she becomes.”
In the batter’s box, Dickmann said her only goal is to not strikeout.
“My big thing is that I would rather ground out or any way to get the ball in play,” Dickmann said. “I try to not be very picky with pitches so if it’s anything close and I think I can hit it I swing.”
Poepping mentioned a Dickmann at-bat against LPGE where she saw seven pitches and fouled multiple pitches off before finding the gap for a double.
“It’s nice to just pencil her in at her spot and she takes care of her business and I can usually rely on a couple of RBIs from her spot a game,” Poepping said. “Her being at the top of the order now everyone feeds off those top three hitters. Brenna is kind of the leader of that group.”
What makes Dickmann’s season even more impressive is that this is her first season playing varsity with last season being canceled.
“I was nervous at first, but I’ve been playing with these girls for so long that it was really easy,” Dickmann said. “I trust them and we trust each other as a team.”
As catcher Dickmann does a good job of relaying the signs from the assistant coach to the pitcher and calming pitchers down when they are in a jam.
“She’ll go out there and talk with them to try and break up the momentum,” Poepping said. “She really just has a positive attitude. She’s a good teammate and someone you want to be around.”
Pierz has only dropped one game all season and Dickmann said she can start seeing and feeling the excitement that surrounds her team.
“It’s been a fun season so far,” Dickmann said. “I think the team is confident, but we never overlook a game. I’m hoping we can get to state this year. We are No. 1 in the section right now. I think we have surprised the Pierz area too seeing how many supporters we’ve gained this far in the season.”
Other notable performances:
Softball: Kiara Olesch, Pierz, hit a home run against LPGE.
Madison Cartsen, Wadena-Deer Creek, went 3-4 with a triple and three runs against Staples-Motley.
Jenna Woidyla, Pillager, went 2-2 with a double and a triple against Crosby-Ironton.
Morgan Eckes, Pequot Lakes, homered and struck out 16 against Staples-Motley.
Kaitlyn Geschwill, Pequot Lakes, collected four hits total and struck out 13 against Staples-Motley.
Brandi Warren, Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale, ripped a homer against Wadena-Deer Creek.
CONRAD ENGSTROM may be reached at 218-855-5861 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/the_rad34.
Highlights: She went a combined 9-12 with two home runs, two doubles and six RBIs last week.