By Alyson Kehn
The University of Wisconsin–Stout Blue Devil’s softball team got off on the right foot in conference play this weekend, taking a pair of games against University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point on Saturday, April 5 and splitting a Sunday doubleheader at University of Wisconsin–Whitewater.
UW–Stout had their heads in the game against UW–Stevens Point, with a 6-0 score in the first game and a 5-1 score in the second game, to kick off WIAC play 2-0.
In game one, senior captain Sam Hastings from Waukesha, Wis. drove in two runs in the third inning. Taylor Workman, a junior from Prior Lake, Minn., also scored in the inning, and two more runs came around when Nicole Rogers, a sophomore from Brooklyn Center, Minn., scored an infield single. The sixth run came when Lynzi Knudtson, a junior from Melrose, Wis., stole home in the fifth inning. Sophomore pitcher Tori Workman of Prior Lake, Minn. threw six innings and secured the win by giving up only two hits while striking out eight batters.
In the second game, the Blue Devils did their work to secure the win in the first inning. Knudtson scored the first run, and Rogers drove in two more runs for a 3-0 first inning lead. In the second and third inning, Knudtson bunted another run home, and Heather Bol, a freshman from Baldwin, Wis., drove in another in the third inning, adding to UW–Stout’s lead. UW–Steven’s Point scored their only run of the day in the fifth inning.
Freshman Caty Schloer of Lino Lakes, Minn. was the winning pitcher for the Blue Devils, giving up four hits in 4 1/3 innings.
On Sunday, the Blue Devils dropped the first of two games by a 2-1 score. A two-run second inning was all UW–Whitewater needed, holding the Blue Devils to a fifth inning solo homer by Kaitlin Stark, a sophomore from Hastings, Minn.
UW–Whitewater continued to roll in the second game, going up 4-1 after two innings on a pair of homeruns. UW–Stout came back slowly, scoring runs in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings before going ahead in the top of the seventh.
A single by Taylor Workman followed by a Tori Workman bunt and error put pinch runner Gabby Gawreluk, a sophomore from St. Paul, Minn., on third and Tori Workman on first with no outs. Gawreluk scored on a Rogers sacrifice fly, and Tori Workman moved to third on a groundout by Bol before Kari Kolle, a sophomore from Eau Claire, Wis., drove her in with a sharp single down the first base side. Tori Workman slammed the door shut with a 1-2-3 bottom half of the inning to earn the victory.
The victory was UW–Stout’s first over UW–Whitewater since taking a 3-1 decision on May 1, 2005.
With the strong start to conference play, the Blue Devils current record stands at 14-10 overall and 3-1 in the WIAC. This is a great start to what looks to be a promising season.
UW–Stout’s next game is set for Wednesday, April 9 in Eau Claire, Wis. Go Blue Devils!