Warriors Finish Tucson Trip With .500 Record

Warriors Finish Tucson Trip With .500 Record

TUCSON, Ariz. - The Wisconsin Lutheran College softball team picked up its second run-rule victory over Crown (Minn.) in as many days, winning 14-6 before suffering a 9-1 run-rule defeat at the hands of Alfred (N.Y.) Friday at Lincoln Park. WLC wrapped up its spring trip to the Tucson Invitational Games with a 5-5 record.

WLC got on the board in the second inning of its first game of the day as Mindy Schalinske (Burlington, Wis./Shoreland Lutheran) reached on a bunt single and advanced to third after an error on the play. Niki Cottini (Plainfield, Ill./North) drove her in with a sacrifice bunt. Later in the frame, Brittney Blazich (Bristol, Wis./Westosha Central) roped a two-out RBI double to right to give the Warriors a 2-0 lead.

Crown (1-3) pulled a run back in the bottom of the second due to an error before the Warriors went back to work in the top of the third. Alicia Barbian (Waterford, Wis./Waterford) scored one run on a passed ball and Abby Wichgers (Muskego, Wis./Muskego) knocked a two-run double to right-center to push the lead to 5-1.

The Storm rallied to tie the game in the bottom of the third. Jena Willis hit an RBI single and then a bases-loaded walk and a pair of fielder's choice grounders brought home three more runs to knot the game at five.

WLC broke the tie in the fourth, as Blazich and Morgan O'Hanlon (Lowell, Ind./Lowell) each reached on bunt singles. A throwing error on O'Hanlon's bunt allowed Blazich to come around and score, and O'Hanlon later scored on a passed ball to make it 7-5.

O'Hanlon's two-run single highlighted a five-run fifth inning. Tara Degl'Innocenti (Lisle, Ill./Naperville North) stole home on a double steal, Emily Sievert (Mukwonago, Wis./Mukwonago) added an RBI single and another run scored on an error to make it 12-5.

Michelle Ritchie (Shiocton, Wis./Shiocton) and Barbian knocked back-to-back RBI singles in the sixth to tack on the final two runs for the Warriors. Moriah Sawyer hit an RBI single for Crown in the sixth, but WLC's eight-run lead ended the game after six innings.

Kendra Thomas (Jenison, Mich./Jenison) held Crown to one run on three hits and struck out four in 3.2 innings of relief for the victory. Wichgers was 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs. Blazich was 3-for-4 with two runs and an RBI and O'Hanlon was 2-for-4 with two RBI and a run.

Willis was 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored for the Storm. Erin Ebbers (0-1) gave up seven runs, five earned, in four innings for the loss.

Alfred (7-2) jumped out to an early lead in the second game of the day, as Samijo Scheer hit a run-scoring single and later came home on a wild pitch to put the Saxons ahead 2-0. Alison Wickwire's RBI base hit in the third made it 3-0.

WLC's lone run of the game came in the bottom of the third on O'Hanlon's infield single, scoring Schalinske to trim the deficit to 3-1.

Alfred responded with a four-run fourth inning, receiving run-scoring hits from Samantha Jauregui, Dana Torchia, Scheer, and Jasmine Picini. Liz Thompson and Torchia drove in runs in the fifth to make it 9-1. Katelyn Jakobsen shut down the Warriors in the bottom of the inning to end the game after five frames.

Thomas (5-3) allowed nine runs, five earned, in five innings for the loss. O'Hanlon was 1-for-3 with an RBI for WLC.

Jakobsen limited the Warriors to a run on four hits in five frames for the victory. Jauregui was 3-for-4 with an RBI and Scheer and Torchia drove in two runs apiece.

Wisconsin Lutheran will return home and have nearly two weeks off before its home opener March 27, when it hosts Mount Mary (0-12) in a non-conference doubleheader beginning at 3 p.m.