WHITEWATER, Wis. (Blugolds.com) – The 23rd-ranked UW-Eau Claire softball team and 13th-ranked UW-Whitewater split wins today at van Steenderen Field with Eau Claire winning game one 2-0 and Whitewater winning game two 4-2.
In game one, which featured a combined eight hits, the only scoring came in the top of the fifth as Eau Claire picked up two runs.
With one on and one out in the top of the fifth inning, Emily Haluska (Sr.-Stevens Point, Wis./SPASH) singled up the middle to drive in Taylor Pierce (So.-Ashwaubenon, Wis.). Two batters later, Jenny Hess (Sr.-Wisconsin Rapids, Wis./Lincoln) hit a single, bringing in Haluska. Both of the runs in the inning were unearned.
Haluska led the Blugolds as she went 2-for-3 with one run and one RBI. The Blugolds finished with five hits while the Warhawks had three.
Pitching a complete game and earning the win was Emma Wishau (Jr.-Burlington, Wis./Waterford Union), who improved to 5-1 on the season. She faced 25 batters and gave up only three hits while striking out two in the shutout.
In the second game, the Blugolds found themselves up 2-0 after three innings but Whitewater came back after scoring once in the fourth and three times in the fifth.
Nikki Brooks (So.-New Richmond, Wis./St. Croix Central) scored the Blugolds' first run in the top of the second after Casey Arnold (So.-Kaukauna, Wis.) doubled to left field and Abby Hansen (Fr.-Kaukauna, Wis.) scored in the top of the third after a Brooks groundout.
But the Warhawks closed the gap by scoring a run in the bottom of the fourth and took a lead they wouldn't give up after three in the fifth.
The Blugolds finished the game with five hits while Whitewater accumulated 10. Amanda Fischer (So.-Wausau, Wis./West) led Eau Claire going 2-for-3.
Zana Lorbetske (Fr.-Rhinelander, Wis./Three Lakes) started the game and pitched a total of 5.1 innings. She struck out four batters and gave up six hits and one unearned run. Wishau, who relieved Lorbetske in the fourth inning, was credited with the loss as she gave up three runs, two of which were earned, while pitching 2/3 of an inning. She struck out one batter and allowed four hits. Lorbetske came back in to close the game after the Warhawks scored three in the bottom of the fifth.
With the win in the first game, the Blugolds ended Whitewater's six-game winning streak. Eau Claire is now 21-6 on the season and 9-3 in the WIAC while the Warhawks are 27-4 overall and 10-3 in conference play.
Sunday, the Blugolds will be in action, their fourth straight day on the field. They will host UW-Platteville at Bollinger Field for a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m. Monday, the Blugolds will take a break before playing at UW-Oshkosh on Tuesday for the final games of the regular season.