Green Bay Swept in Competitive Doubleheader at Wisconsin
By: Ryan Hartwig (@GBHartwig)
MADISON, Wis. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) – The Green Bay softball team dropped a pair of competitive road contests at in-state rival Wisconsin on Wednesday at Goodman Diamond in Madison. The Phoenix fell to 16-9 overall on the year, while the Badgers improved to 24-15 and increased their winning streak to seven games.
Wisconsin rallied to score five runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to win the exciting opener 9-8, and the hosts held off the Phoenix for a 5-2 victory in the late game.
Green Bay continues its seven-game road stretch this weekend when it travels to Horizon League foe Cleveland State for a trio of contests. The Phoenix and the Vikings begin the series with a single game on Friday at 2 p.m., followed by a doubleheader on Saturday morning (9 and 11 a.m.).
Game One: Wisconsin 9, Green Bay 8
Green Bay was in control for the majority of game one and held a four-run lead heading into the bottom of the seventh inning, but Wisconsin rallied to score five runs in their final at-bat to stun the Phoenix 9-8 in walk-off fashion.
Green Bay started fast, plating a pair of runs on four hits in the top of the first inning. Senior Stacey Butts (Greenfield, Wis.) got the scoring started, driving home her sister Shannon Butts (Greenfield, Wis.) and sophomore Marissa Michalkiewicz (Appleton, Wis.) with a two-out single to right center field, giving the Phoenix the 2-0 advantage.
Wisconsin got a run back in the bottom of the first, and then tied the game at 2-2 in the third inning on a solo home run by reigning Big Ten Player of the Week Michelle Mueller.
The Phoenix regained the lead in the top of the fourth when sophomore Briana Cavin (Elk Grove Village, Ill.) scored on a Wisconsin error following a single by Stacey Butts, but the Badgers knotted things up once again at 3-3 in the bottom half of the inning thanks to a Phoenix fielding error.
Green Bay exploded for four runs in the top of the fifth, batting around and cracking six hits en route to opening up a 7-3 lead. The Phoenix started the inning with four consecutive hits, including a single to left center by Michalkiewicz that drove in sophomore Kelli Hutchinson (Trevor, Wis.) and kept the bases loaded. A Shannon Butts walk in the next at-bat plated another Phoenix run, and back-to-back singles by freshmen Katelyn Huemmer (Sun Prairie, Wis.) and Abby Brinkmeier (Eagan, Minn.) drove in two more before Wisconsin finally ended the inning, leaving three runners stranded.
The Phoenix increased its lead to 8-3 on a Shannon Butts RBI double in the top of the sixth, but the Badgers would score the game’s next six runs to earn the thrilling victory.
Megan Tancill singled down the left field line to drive home Katie Christner in the Wisconsin half of the sixth, cutting the Phoenix lead to 8-4. The Badgers held the Phoenix scoreless in the top of the seventh, and then scored five runs on five hits in their last at-bat.
Freshman Chloe Miller made it a two-run game with her 2-RBI double to right center, Ashley Van Zeeland drove home another run on a sacrifice bunt and Christner tied things up at 8-8 with an RBI double to left. Senior Mary Massei ended it with a two-out, walk-off RBI single down the right field line, driving home Christner.
Shannon Butts finished the game 3-for-3 with two runs scored, two RBIs, a walk and a steal. Michalkiewicz, Hailey Mohrfeld (Menomonee Falls, Wis.) and Stacey Butts all finished with two hits apiece for Green Bay.
Senior Ashley Nannemann (Burlington, Wis.) pitched 6.2 innings for the Phoenix, allowing six earned runs on 11 hits. Cassandra Darrah tossed a complete game for the Badgers in the winning effort.
Game Two: Wisconsin 5, Green Bay 2
Green Bay brought the tying run at the plate in the top of the seventh inning in game number two, but the Badgers were able to hold off the Phoenix for the 5-2 win.
Just like in game one, the Phoenix got on the board first in the top of inning number one. This time it was Shannon Butts driving in senior Miranda Reinke (Milwaukee, Wis.) with a single, making it 1-0 in favor of the visitors.
Miller got the Badgers on the scoreboard with a solo homer to lead off the bottom of the fourth, cutting the score to 2-1. Wisconsin’s offense then caught fire in the fifth, as the hosts added four more runs on three hits – including a three-run blast by Mueller – to pull ahead for good.
Michalkiewicz came to the plate with two runners on in the top of the seventh inning, but a groundout ended it and gave the Badgers their seventh straight win.
Shannon Butts added three more hits for the Phoenix in game two. Heather Sanderson (Rapid River, Mich.) started on the mound and threw five innings for the visitors, giving up two earned runs on six hits.
For the latest and most up-to-date information on Green Bay Athletics and Green Bay Softball, please visit GreenBayPhoenix.com.