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Softball Sweeps Whitewater, McKinney Breaks Career Record
Posted: Sunday, April 23, 2006
EAU CLAIRE - UW-Eau Claire softball pitcher Mallory McKinney (Jr. -Brooklyn Park, MN/Champlin Park) broke the school's career strikeout record of 343 set by Heidi Bergstrom (1997-2000) in game one as the eighth-ranked Blugolds swept a doubleheader from UW-Whitewater today at Gelein Field.
In game one, the Blugolds fell behind early, but rallied and pulled away late as they won 9-2. In game two, the Blugolds would rally again using late-inning heroics to win 2-1.
The Blugolds now have a record of 28-4 overall and remain unbeaten in conference play at 12-0. The Blugolds have won 15 straight regular season conference games dating back to last year. The Warhawks drop to an overall record of 19-13 and 6-8 in conference play.
In game one, the Warhawks jumped on the Blugolds in the top of the first inning getting three of their four hits in the game and scored two runs to go up 2-0. However, from there on the Blugolds would take control.
The Blugolds would tie it up in the bottom of the third with two unearned runs. Mallory McKinney would get the Blugolds on the board with an RBI double that scored Steph Salter (Jr.-Schofield, WI/D.C. Everest). Jill Janke (So.-Black River Falls, WI) would then tie it up with an RBI ground out that scored Rachel Paulus (Jr.-Wisconsin Rapids, WI/Lincoln).
Amber Haack (Jr.-Madison, WI/LaFollette) then led off the fourth with a homerun to give the Blugolds a 3-2 lead. The Blugolds would break it open in the fifth and sixth inning scoring three runs in each. In the fifth, after Paulus had an RBI, Janke would hit a two-run HR to make the score 6-2. In the sixth, Paulus would hit a two-RBI triple and McKinney would hit a sacrifice fly and the Blugolds went onto 9-2.
McKinney (18-1) got the victory on the mound, giving up just one hit after the three-hit first inning and striking out seven in her 15th complete game of the season. McKinney currently has total 346 career strikeouts. She was also 2-for-3 with two RBIs at the plate.
In game two, the Blugolds squandered an opportunity early as they left the bases loaded in the bottom of the second inning. The Warhawks would then get on the board in the top of the third with an RBI double.
Whitewater would then leave the bases loaded in the top of the fifth as Blugold pitcher Bri Sturm (Fr.-Zumbrota, MN/Zumbrota-Mazeppa) got out of the jam.
Then in the bottom of the seventh with the score 1-0, the Blugolds were down to their final out. With two strikes, Steph Salter would reach base on an error by the pitcher. Then Casey Leisgang (So.-Seymour, WI) would hit a RBI double down the right field line to score Salter. Rachel Paulus would then hit a bloop single just over the shortstop and Leisgang would score the winning run as the Blugolds won 2-1.
Rachel Paulus was 3-for-4 in the game and had the game-winning RBI. Sturm (7-1) got the win on the mound as she went the distance, giving up just two hits and striking out four.
Next, the Blugolds will travel to face Luther College in a non-conference doubleheader on Thursday. The first game of the doubleheader begins at 3 p.m.
- JR -