EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (Blugolds.com) – Amanda Fischer (Fr.-Wausau, Wis./West) hit three-run homers in the third inning in both games of a doubleheader, and the UW-Eau Claire softball team went on to defeat UW-Oshkosh twice on Gelein Field at Carson Park today.
The Blugolds took game one 10-3 while winning the second game 10-6. Eau Claire has now won 12 games in a row, tied for the third longest winning streak in school history. The streak is the longest since the 2006 season when the Blugolds set a school record at 18 while also winning 13 in a row the same season. Eau Claire is now 12-2 in games decided by five or more runs and 3-1 in games decided by four runs, improving to 28-10 on the season and 12-2 in conference play. Oshkosh falls to 21-17 overall and 6-8 in the conference.
In the first game in the top of the third with two outs, Fischer came to the plate and hit a home run to deep center field, allowing Taylor Pierce (Fr.-Ashwaubenon, Wis.) and Amanda Houle (So.-Chisago City, Minn./Chisago Lakes) to score, giving Eau Claire a 3-0 lead.
While the Titans scored two runs in the top of the fourth and sixth innings, the Blugolds managed to get runs in each of the remaining innings. After getting up 6-3 after the top of the sixth, the Blugolds added four runs in the bottom of the sixth to help in the 10-3 victory.
Fischer led the game with four RBI while she also had a game-high three runs and tied for a game-high with two hits. Nikki Bromelkamp (Sr.-Zumbrota, Minn./Zumbrota-Mazeppa) also had two hits along with two Oshkosh batters. Eau Claire finished with six hits.
Emma Wishau (So.-Waterford, Wis./Union) pitched the complete game, her 14th of the year, and allowed seven hits and three earned runs while striking out three batters. Wishau is now 11-6 on the season.
In game two, the Titans jumped out in front of the Blugolds after scoring one run in the top of the third. But in the bottom of the third, both Houle and Emily Haluska (Jr.-Stevens Point, Wis./SPASH) scored runs to give Eau Claire a 2-1 lead and Fischer then came up and hit another three-run homer, scoring Pierce and Jenny Hess (Jr.-Wisconsin Rapids, Wis./Lincoln), to give the Blugolds a 5-1 advantage.
After Oshkosh scored three runs in the top of the fifth to cut the Blugolds' lead to just one (5-4), the Blugolds answered in the bottom of the inning after Pierce scored on a wild pitch and then followed with a four-run sixth inning to take a 10-4 lead. Fischer tripled in that inning, while brought in two of the runs.
Despite a six-run lead, the Titans came on strong at the end. After starting the inning with an out, the Titans loaded the bases and were able to bring in two runs to make the score 10-6. With only one out and the bases still loaded, the Blugolds were finally able to get the final two outs and left three Oshkosh runners stranded.
Fischer again led the game with five RBI while she and three other Blugolds each had two hits. The Blugolds finished with a total of 10 hits. Pierce led the game with three runs.
Ashley Meinen (Sr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) earned the win as she pitched 4.2 innings. She struck out three batters but allowed four runs, only three of which were earned, while giving up seven hits. Meinen improves to 12-3 on the year. Laura Raflik (Fr.-Plover, Wis./Pacelli) pitched the final 2.1 innings and recorded a save, her third of the year.
The wins today keep the Blugolds in the hunt for the WIAC title and a chance to earn the No. 1 seed in the WIAC Tournament, which would mean home-field advantage for the six-team event. With a 12-2 conference record, they are tied with UW-Whitewater for first place and will host the Warhawks in a doubleheader Sunday beginning noon at Gelein Field.