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Softball Season Ends In Extra Innings
Posted: Saturday, May 9, 2009
BLOOMINGTON, Ill.- For the second time in as many games, the UW-Eau Claire softball team faced off against 13th-ranked UW-Whitewater at the 2009 NCAA Softball Regional. After leading 2-1 through four innings, Whitewater managed to tie the game and eventually take the lead for good, winning 7-2 today, eliminating the Blugolds.
Eau Claire finishes its season with an overall record of 28-16, while the Warhawks improve to 38-6 and move on to face Illinois Wesleyan in the next round.
The Blugolds struggled to find a rhythm at the plate, managing just four hits in 30 at-bats. Both teams had a hard time reaching base through the first four innings, with Whitewater connecting on just one hit in the top of the second. Eau Claire broke the silence in the bottom of the fourth, picking up two runs on three hits. After the first two hitters recorded outs, Kristi Doucette (Sr.-Green Bay, Wis./Ashwaubenon) got things going with a single. Sara Baumgartner (So.-Arcadia, Wis.) followed with a single of her own, putting runners on first and second. Doubling to right center, Jenny Janke (Fr.-Black River Falls, Wis.) drove in pinch runner Meghan O'Hearn (So.-Woodbury, Minn.) and Baumgartner to take a 2-0 lead.
Whitewater cut the lead to one on a Liz Yucuis homerun, and tied to the game at two in the top of the sixth on a Susan Gersich double. Neither team was able to take the lead in regulation, sending the game into extra innings. In the top of the ninth, Yucuis struck again, belting her second homerun of the game and giving the Warhawks the lead for good. Whitewater would tack on four more runs following the homer, to take a commanding 7-2 lead. The Blugolds went down in order in the home half of the inning, ending the game.
Ashley Meinen (Fr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./McDonnel) took the loss in the circle in relief of starter Bri Sturm (Sr.-Zumbrota, Minn./Zumbrota-Mazeppa). Sturm went six and one-third innings, giving up five runs, two unearned on four hits. Meinen went two and two-thirds innings, giving up one earned run on six hits.
Janke paced the offense, going 1-for-3 with a double and two RBI's, while Doucette and Baumgartner went 1-for-2 and 1-for-3, respectively.
The loss ends the careers of Doucette, Sturm, Jen Barron (Sr.-Brooklyn Center, Minn.) and Betsy Kettinger (Sr.-Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson).
- CL -