FORT DODGE - Defending its North Central Conference title isn't going to be easy for the Webster City softball team.
The Lynx are already in catch-up mode after they opened their league season with a disappointing 5-1 loss to Fort Dodge St. Edmond on Friday at the Rogers Sports Complex.
Fort Dodge Senior High transfer Katie Donnelly fanned 10 batters and the Gaels (2-0, 1-0 NCC) touched all-conference pitcher Kaitlyn Biere for seven hits en route to the victory.
"(St. Edmond is) stacked with hitters," WCHS head coach Jess Howard said. "They've got a lot of girls that can put the ball in play and that's what they did in the (3-run) sixth inning, and we couldn't make the plays that we needed to get out of it."
St. Edmond led 2-1 before it erupted in the last half of the sixth frame.
Trailing 2-0, WCHS (0-2, 0-1 NCC) trimmed its deficit to one run in the top of the fourth on a RBI fielder's choice off the bat of Mikaleh McCoy. It scored Tiffany Constable, who was aboard with a lead-off single.
Webster City000 100 0-1 5 2
St. Edmond101 003 x-5 7 1
Kaitlyn Biere and Kaylee Schnathorst. Katie Donnelly and Allie Oberg. W-Donnelly. L-Biere. 2B-SE: Josie Heesch. RBI-WCHS: Mikaleh McCoy; SE: Lexi Peed, Oberg, Heesch, Timmi Dencklau, Jessica Kuebler.
McCoy, Constable, Kayla Dawson, Abbey Fuhs and Allie Flaws all singled in the loss.
Biere struck out six and issued just one walk. Three of St. Edmond's runs were earned.
WCHS will make its home debut tonight when it hosts Iowa Falls-Alden at 7:30 p.m.