Softball Ends Season with 4-1 Loss to Carthage in NCAA Regional

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (Blugolds.com) – The 22nd-ranked UW-Eau Claire softball team concluded the 2012 season with a 4-1 loss to No. 21 Carthage College on the third day of the NCAA Regional at Illinois Wesleyan Field today.

The Blugolds finish the season with a 33-14 mark. They won their opening contest against Fontbonne on Thursday but fell to ninth-ranked Illinois Wesleyan University Friday. Carthage advances in the double-elimination regional tournament, improving to 36-9.

Carthage struck first today, scoring two runs in both the second and third innings to jump out to a 4-0 lead.

In the bottom of the fourth, the Blugolds got one run back but that was the last score either team managed. After there were two outs in the fourth, the Blugolds put two runners on base and Sarah Fern (Jr.-Brooklyn Center, Minn./Park Center) then singled to right field, allowing Emily Muller (Sr.-Lancaster, Wis.) to score from second base. Carthage was able to get out of the inning after the Blugolds loaded the bases, and hung on for the win.

Carthage finished with eight hits while Eau Claire had five, all coming from different players.

Ashley Meinen (Sr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) took the loss for the Blugolds, dropping to 12-6 for the year. She gave up four runs and five hits, pitching 2.1 innings. Emma Wishau (So.-Waterford, Wis./Union) closed the game, pitching the final 4.2 innings and struck out three batters while allowing three hits.

Meinen completed her career with Eau Claire, totaling 105 total appearances. She had a 39-22 record and struck out 205 batters while holding a 3.03 ERA. Her 39 wins rank fourth most in Blugold archives while her 105 appearances is third.

Nikki Bromelkamp (Sr.-Zumbrota, Minn./Zumbrota-Mazeppa), who was named to the Bloomington Regional All-Tournament Team at the conclusion of the event Sunday, completed her time with the Blugolds playing in 121 games. She finished second in career rankings with nine sacrifice flies and was second in highest fielding percentage with a mark of .987. She also tied for 10th with 413 putouts.

Jess Freagon (Sr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonell) also finished her career with Eau Claire. Playing 153 games, she had the eighth best career slugging percentage (.536) and was also eighth with 34 doubles. Freagon ranks fifth all-time in career home runs with 17 and was ninth with 101 RBI. In the field, she had 423 putouts, ninth best in program history.

Also finishing her career was Muller, who played in 159 games. Her 96 career runs rank ninth best in all-time rankings while her six sacrifice flies tied for seventh most.

-KM-