FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

May 18, 2007

 

2007 NCAA Div. III Softball Tournament
National Championship Round Score Report

James I. Moyer Sports Complex         Salem, Virginia

 

GAME THREE

 

 

 

1

2

3

4

5

 

 

R

H

E

#6 Rhode Island College (41-6)

0

1

0

0

0

 

 

1

2

7

#3 Wisconsin-Eau Claire (36-12)

0

0

5

2

2

 

 

9

11

1

 

BLUGOLDS HAMMER ANCHORWOMEN, 9-1, IN FIVE INNINGS
Season-High Seven Errors Lead to RIC’s Worst Loss of the Season

Providence, RI—Third-seeded Wisconsin-Eau Claire capitalized on seven errors to hand sixth-seeded Rhode Island College its worst loss of the season, 9-1, in game three of the 2007 NCAA Div. III Softball Tournament National Championship Round on Friday afternoon. The Anchorwomen’s seven miscues in the field were the most made by the squad in a contest on the season.

 
           "I think after this they’re going to turn things around," said Head Coach Maria Morin. "It was a totally new experience for us and whether it was gun shy or camera shy, we’re not a seven-error team. We haven’t been a seven-error team all year long, so I have to attribute it to something else I guess. I don’t think we’re going to do it again. I think we’ve learned a little something from today’s game. They know now what they have to do to prepare themselves, so I’m looking forward to new results tomorrow." 

 

The Anchorwomen will play an elimination game with the loser of the second-seeded Washington-St. Louis vs. seventh-seeded Plattsburgh State (6:30 p.m.) tomorrow afternoon at 1:30 p.m.

 

Rhode Island College senior pitcher Nicole Riley (North Providence, RI) got out of a jam in the bottom of the first as Blugold junior second baseman Casey Leisgang (Seymour, WI) led off with a double and senior right fielder Rachel Paulus (Wisconsin Rapids, WI) reached on a throwing error to put runners on first and third with no outs. Riley slammed the door with a pop up and a strikeout, while Leisgang was thrown out after getting caught in a rundown between third and home.

 

Rhode Island College freshman designated player Mandy Shurgot (Woonsocket, RI) blasted Blugold senior pitcher Mallory McKinney’s (Brooklyn Park, MN) first offering of the top of the second over the left center field fence to put the Anchorwomen up, 1-0. It was her third homer of the season.

 

That would be the lone highlight of the day for RIC, which fell apart in the field in the bottom of the third. After a single and a walk, McKinney helped her own cause with an RBI double to left center field. Junior third baseman Michelle Butkus (Medford, WI) hit a deep fly ball to the right field corner that freshman Michelle Perrin (Saugus, MA) dropped, allowing Paulus to score. The Blugold plated three additional runs on two more RIC errors to take a 5-1 lead.

 

McKinney dominated the Anchorwomen for the remainder of the contest, allowing just a harmless freshman Jamie Mastrocola (Everett, MA) and a freshman center fielder Jackie Dube (Barrington, RI) single the rest of the way.  She allowed just one run on two hits, to go along with four strikeouts in five innings of work to earn her 18th (18-8) win.

 

Wisconsin-Eau Claire plated two additional runs in the fourth, capped by a senior center fielder Shannon Barone (De Pere, WI) two-RBI single. Riley was chased from the game after four innings of work. She allowed seven runs, four of which were earned, on eight hits, to go along with two walks and two strikeouts as the Second Team All-American suffered just her fourth loss (29-4) of the season.

 
           "We’re in nationals," Riley said. "We’re going to face some great hitting teams. These girls, they’re exact location hitters. They work tremendous hours hitting their spots.  Tomorrow, I’ve just got to come out and make sure my stuff is working.  I’ll go home tonight and think about what I did and what I didn’t do.  Tomorrow’s a whole new day, so if I don’t get all the kinks out tonight mentally, then tomorrow I’ll work it out before the game." 

 

Freshman Jamie Sacco (Bellingham, MA) came on for the fifth, but RBI singles by Leisgang and McKinney sealed RIC’s fate. It marks the first time this year that the Anchorwomen were handed a loss in just five innings due to the eight-run rule.

 

Leisgang went 3-for-3 with one run scored, one RBI and a double. In addition to her outstanding pitching performance, McKinney went 3-for-4 with two RBI and a double. Senior shortstop Mandy Tschernach (Rice Lake, WI) went 2-for-3 with two runs scored, while Barone went 2-for-3 with a game-high three RBI.

 

-Complete box score to follow-