DECORAH, Iowa (Blugolds.com) – The 14th-ranked UW-Eau Claire softball team won the first game of a doubleheader against third-ranked Luther College (Iowa) 2-0 but dropped the second game 5-1 today.
In game one, the Blugolds scored runs in the top of the first and the top of the seventh while shutting out the Norse. It was the Blugolds' third shutout of the season.
In the top of the first, Jenny Hess (Jr.-Wisconsin Rapids, Wis./Lincoln) got on right away with a single and advanced to second as Emily Muller (Sr.-Lancaster, Wis.) grounded out for a sacrifice. Hess then stole third and scored after a Casey Arnold (Fr.-Kaukauna, Wis.) at-bat.
In the final inning, Taylor Pierce (Fr.-Green Bay, Wis./Ashwaubenon) scored with two outs. She got on base with a single with just one out in the inning.
Eau Claire played tough defense as Luther stranded eight on bases after picking up six hits. Emma Wishau (So.-Waterford, Wis./Union) recorded the win in the circle as she struck out six batters. She improved to 4-3, pitching her sixth complete game and second shutout of the year.
In game two while the Blugolds struck first, Luther scored four runs in the fourth inning and the Blugolds could never recover.
Jess Freagon (Sr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) scored the Blugolds' lone run in the top of the second after an error by the catcher with two outs. In the fourth, Luther scored four runs on four hits with one Blugold error. The Norse added another run in the bottom of the sixth.
Eau Claire had five hits, all by different players, but left eight runners on bases as Luther finished with nine hits while leaving seven stranded.
Ashley Meinen (Sr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) started the game in the circle and pitched three innings, facing 13 batters. She struck out two of them but gave up four hits and three runs, only one of which was earned. Wishau pitched the final three innings and allowed five hits and two runs, only one earned, while striking out one batter.
Eau Claire is now 8-6 on the season while the Norse are 13-3.
Saturday the Blugolds will play in their first home and conference game as they host UW-Stevens Point in a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m.