Last week saw a battle of the top two teams in conference duke it out for top conference honors and a trip to the regional tournament in Indiana on May 11th. Game one of the three game series was a wakeup call for the Blugolds as Marquette jumped on them early and often. Marquette posted a 6 run second inning to grab a lead they would not relinquish for the rest of the game. The final score of game 1 was 10-4, and left a statement that Marquette was here to sweep.
Game 2 was played at Carson Park and saw the best pitching matchup of the season. Both teams threw their ace in this battle and neither pitcher disappointed. Hits were hard to come by in the game as there was only a combined 5 total; unfortunately Marquette was able to post the more valuable of the hits. In the top of the 5th inning Marquette was able to grab a lead with a solo home run, which would provide all the offense they needed. Marquette’s ace ended the game with a complete game 3 hit shutout, striking out 13 Blugolds. Shawn Held pitched for the Blugolds turning in a complete game as well, allowing only 2 hits, 1 earned run and striking out 8.
The conference title still hung in the balance after two games so it would all come down to game three. Erik Berns took the mound for Eau Claire and after giving up a few runs in the first two innings, settled in and put forth a great effort. After giving up the lead early, Eau Claire was able to push across multiple runs in each of the first two innings reclaiming the lead for Berns. The scoring settled after the first three innings, and defense helped the Blugolds grab game three by a final of 6-2. Berns pitched a complete game giving up only 2 runs while striking out 7. Ryan Pulvermacher, Jimmy Kopp, and Matt Kruger all had RBI’s for Eau Claire.
Due to the fact that Eau Claire lost 2 of 3 to Marquette no conference champion was able to be crowned at that time. Eau Claire owned a half game lead over Marquette and still had a makeup game with UW-Madison. Due to weather issues this makeup game was cancelled twice over the past weekend and Eau Claire was crowned conference champions.
Eau Claire now heads to the regional tournament in Huntingburg Indiana and will have a rematch with the University of Illinois on Friday May 11th at 1pm.
Club Baseball Memory: My favorite moment in club ball was travelling to Florida my sophomore year for spring training. I was eager to play competitively, under the Florida sun, for the first time in three years.
Every moment I’ve had the ability to be on the field playing the sport I love has been my greatest moment in club ball.
Best Baseball Memory: One specific baseball moment stands out above the others from back in my sophomore year of high school. My diving catch in the outfield secured our team’s first win of the season after losing our first 17 games.
Future Aspirations: The world of sports and marketing complement each other perfectly. With my marketing major and love of sports, I plan to parlay that into a sports marketing career. I’ve been fortunate to ‘work’ in sports marketing by having an internship with the Milwaukee Brewers Marketing Department my senior year in high school. I also had the ability to study abroad in Sweden my junior year in college, which has me now considering a career aboard. If the sports world doesn't call my number immediately, I’ll definitely consider working within international marketing.
Club Baseball Memory: Clinching the Conference Championship this season and heading to regionals
Best Baseball Memory: Breaking my high school single season and career RBI records and well as taking third in Home Talent Playoffs in 2006.
Future Aspirations: I will graduate in May with a degree in Accounting and plan to move back to Madison to work and play baseball.