BLANCHE EVEN / by Molly Schiot

Blanche Even was South Dakota's greatest women's fastpitch player. "She could play shortstop for any men's team," Locke coach Ike Hoover said in a 1992 Argus Leader story. "She was the best there ever was at that position." There were no sporting events for girls in high school during the 1940s, so Even's extracurricular activities included being a majorette for the school "Pep Squad." She grew up around ballplayers. Her father and five brothers all played baseball. "I was always playing catch with my brothers," recalled Even, the youngest of eight children. "There weren't any teams for girls in Sioux Falls, so I'd always tag along with them."After graduation, Even worked at Crescent Electric Supply for two years. She joined Electric Construction Company in 1951, working there and with the later renamed retail division, Mahlander's Appliance & Lighting Company, for 44 years, retiring in 1995.

Blanche Even was South Dakota's greatest women's fastpitch player. "She could play shortstop for any men's team," Locke coach Ike Hoover said in a 1992 Argus Leader story. "She was the best there ever was at that position." There were no sporting events for girls in high school during the 1940s, so Even's extracurricular activities included being a majorette for the school "Pep Squad." She grew up around ballplayers. Her father and five brothers all played baseball. "I was always playing catch with my brothers," recalled Even, the youngest of eight children. "There weren't any teams for girls in Sioux Falls, so I'd always tag along with them."After graduation, Even worked at Crescent Electric Supply for two years. She joined Electric Construction Company in 1951, working there and with the later renamed retail division, Mahlander's Appliance & Lighting Company, for 44 years, retiring in 1995.