March 19, 2013

Softball on Spring Break - Blugolds Drop First Game of the Season, But Salvage Doubleheader Split

CLERMONT, Fla. (Blugolds.com) — The UW-Eau Claire softball team finally saw their undefeated start to the season come to an end, but they still managed to pick up a doubleheader split, with a 4-0 loss to Tufts University (Mass.) and a 4-0 win over the University of Massachusetts-Boston.

Tufts University (6-1), ranked eighth in the nation by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association, got the offense started early against UW-Eau Claire (6-1) pitcher Emma Wishau (Jr.-Burlington, Wis./Waterford Union) with a three-run first inning. That ended the afternoon for Wishau, who took the loss. Zana Lorbetske (Fr.-Rhinelander, Wis./Three Lakes) finished the final five innings and gave up one run on four hits.

The Blugolds finished with four hits in the first game, but they were unable to get a run across for the first time this season. Amanda Fischer (So.-Wausau, Wis./West), Sarah Fern (Sr.-Brooklyn Center, Minn./Park Center), Deanna Gilane (So.-South Milwaukee, Wis./South Milwaukee) and Nikki Brooks (So.-New Richmond, Wis./St. Croix Central) all had one hit each. 

In the second game, the Blugolds (7-1) scored in the first two innings and Laura Raflik (So.-Plover, Wis./Pacelli) took care of the rest, going the distance to pick up the complete game shutout, while allowing just four hits against Mass.-Boston (2-4).

Emily Haluska
(Sr.-Stevens Point, Wis./SPASH) brought home Fischer with an RBI single in the first inning for the 1-0 lead. In the second inning, the Blugolds added three more runs.

With runners on second and third, Jenny Hess (Sr.-Wisconsin Rapids, Wis./Lincoln) laid down an RBI bunt single for the first run of the inning. A walk loaded the bases for Gilane, who was hit by a pitch to bring home another run. With the bases still loaded, Haluska reached on an error by the second baseman to plate the final run of the inning for the 4-0 lead.

The Blugolds finished with five hits, one each by Fischer, Hess, Haluska, Taylor Pierce (So.-Ashwaubenon, Wis./Ashwaubenon) and Abby Hansen (Fr.-Kaukauna, Wis./Kaukauna), while Haluska also added two RBIs.

The Blugolds are now 5-1 on their spring break trip and will be off tomorrow. They will be back in action again on Thursday for two more games with the first one starting at 2 p.m. 

-JM-