ROSEMOUNT, Minn. (Blugolds.com) - The UW-Eau Claire softball team opened up the 2013 season on a high note, picking up two wins over the College of St. Benedict (Minn.) Saturday morning at the Irish Sports Dome. The Blugolds won 8-0 in the first game and 8-4 in the second matchup.
Laura Raflik (So.-Plover, Wis./Pacelli) and Nikki Brooks (So.-New Richmond, Wis./St. Croix Academy) took control in the circle in game one, each giving up only one hit a piece. Raflik also added five strikeouts in five innings.
Taylor Pierce (So.-Ashwaubenon, Wis.) came up big for the Blugolds in the third inning of game one, hitting a double which drove in two runners to give the Blugolds a 2-0 lead. She finished with three RBI in the game and recorded two hits.
Teammate Jenny Hess (Sr.-Wisconsin Rapids, Wis./Lincoln) led the Blugolds by scoring three runs while also finishing with a game-high three hits in four at-bats.
In the second game, Emily Ruegemer (Jr.-St. Cloud, Minn./Cathedral) pitched all seven innings giving up just four hits while striking out three batters.
The Blugolds opened the game with a three-run first inning and while the Blazers scored runs in the second, third and fifth innings to get back to within two, Eau Claire added two runs in the bottom of the sixth to win by four.
Amanda Fischer (So.-Wausau, Wis./West) had a double in the bottom of the sixth to score two runners, which gave the Blugolds a four-run cushion. She also hit a home run in the fourth inning which allowed two runs to score.
UW-Eau Claire is now 2-0 on the season while St. Benedict falls to 0-2.
The Blugolds will be back in action Sunday, March 17 when they travel to Clermont, Fla. for their Spring Break trip. They will play a total of 10 games during the week of Spring Break.