Softball Rallies to Defeat UW-Oshkosh in WIAC Championship Opener

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (Blugolds.com) – Despite trailing for the first four innings, the 22nd-ranked UW-Eau Claire softball team scored two runs in each of the final two innings to defeat UW-Oshkosh 5-2 in the opening game of the WIAC Championship at Gelein Field today.

Eau Claire has now won 15 straight games, the second longest winning streak in school history behind an 18-game streak from 2006, and improves to 31-10 on the season. Oshkosh drops to 22-19. With the win, the Blugolds will next play at 10 a.m. Saturday. Oshkosh will face UW-Platteville in an elimination contest Friday evening.

Oshkosh got on the board first, scoring two runs, both unearned, in the top of the second inning.

The Blugolds, which have won 20 of their last 22 games including 11 straight at home, scored an initial run in the fourth to cut the Titans' lead to just one. Jess Freagon (Sr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) scored in the inning following an Emily Haluska (Jr.-Stevens Point, Wis./SPASH) single to center field.

In the fifth, Taylor Pierce (Fr.-Ashwaubenon, Wis.) scored and tied the game up after Nikki Bromelkamp (Sr.-Zumbrota, Minn./Zumbrota-Mazeppa) reached on a fielding error by the left fielder. Freagon then singled up the middle, and Bromelkamp came in to give the Blugolds a 3-2 advantage.

The Blugolds scored two insurance runs in the sixth. Jenny Hess (Jr.-Wisconsin Rapids, Wis./Lincoln) came home after Pierce doubled to left field, and Pierce scored after Amanda Fischer (Fr.-Wausau, Wis./West) singled following a pitching change.

Fischer, who has a hit in 15 of the past 16 games, led the Blugolds with three hits in three at-bats. As a team, the Blugolds finished with eight hits while Oshkosh had nine.

In the circle, Emma Wishau (So.-Waterford, Wis./Union) pitched her 16th complete game of the season and struck out two batters on her way to improving to 13-6 on the year.

-KM-