The University of Wisconsin-Superior softball team kept its Upper Midwest Athletic Conference playoff hopes alive with a doubleheader split with Bethany Lutheran Sunday in Mankato, Minn.
UWS wraps up its regular season by hosting North Central University (0-10 UMAC, 1-17 overall) for two games at 1 p.m. Saturday at Liebaert Field.
The Yellowjackets are currently in fourth place in the UMAC at 7-7. Bethany Lutheran is next at 6-8. St. Scholastica (11-1) and Crown (10-2) have already clinched playoff berths.
In the opener, UWS walked three batters to set up Cindy Pawlitschek’s game-winning two-out, two-run double in the seventh inning of the Vikings’ 4-3 victory.
Pawlitschek finished 3-for-4 on the day with three RBIs and a run scored.
The Yellowjackets were held off the scoreboard until the top half of the seventh inning, when Bailey Armstrong belted a two-run homer, and former Superior Spartan Gabby Gidley hit an RBI double.
Bethany Lutheran pitcher Anna Pipenhagen struck out 12 and allowed just six hits in the complete-game win.
Senior right-hander Sarah Hendrick tossed the first six innings, allowing one earned run on six hits while striking out two. Freshman Megan Pehrson took over for the final frame as the Vikings (12-22, 6-8) touched her up for two runs on three walks and a hit in 0.2 innings.
Pehrson rebounded in game two, as she tossed a complete-game shutout, scattering four hits with one walk and four strikeouts.
Pipenhagen allowed one earned run on four hits in three innings, and UW-Superior scored two more against reliever Christina Wickingson.
Katie White paced UWS at the plate with a pair of hits. Bailey Armstrong and Saige Patrick had a hit and RBI each; and Ciarra Taipale, Bobbie Jean Miller, Gidley and Maggie Cragg all singled.
UWS also lost a pair of games to Northwestern Friday in St. Paul
Northwestern scored three runs in the bottom of the eighth inning, the last on a wild pitch, to defeat UWS 4-3 and complete the sweep.
Armstrong’s two-run single in the top of the eighth gave UWS a 3-1 lead before the Eagles (12-16 overall, 8-2 UMAC) rallied in the bottom half of the inning on a two-run sacrifice to the catcher with the bases loaded and then the game-winning wild pitch by Pehrson.
UWS also got a double, single and RBI from Taipale; two hits from Bailey Kinnunen; and a hit apiece from White and Kayla Hartl.
The Yellowjackets lost 5-3 in the opening game despite outhitting the Eagles 10-7.
Patrick was 3-for-4 and scored two runs for UWS, whose two-run seventh-inning rally wasn’t enough to overcome a four-run deficit. White also doubled and singled, and Gidley, Miller, Armstrong, Taipale and Cragg all singled.
Pehrson took the loss after failing to get out of the third inning.
UW-Superior................. 000 000 3 — 3 6 2
Bethany Lutheran.......... 100 100 2 — 4 7 0
UW-Superior................. 002 010 1 — 4 8 1
Bethany Lutheran.......... 000 000 0 — 0 4 3
UW-Superior................. 100 000 2 — 3 10 4
Northwestern................. 102 110 x — 5 7 1
UW-Superior................. 000 001 02 — 3 7 2
Northwestern................. 100 000 03 — 4 5 3
UWS split a nonconference doubleheader at Macalester Sunday in St. Paul, winning 7-5 in 10 innings before losing 8-7.
Cory Albertson and first Travis Miller drove in the winning runs in the 10th inning of Game 1 via RBI singles. Albertson finished 4-for-4 and Miller was 3-for-6. Both had doubles earlier in the win.
Albertson was 2-for-3 in Game 2 with two RBIs.
Macalester scored seven of its eight runs in the third inning.
UWS also snapped a four-game skid with a sweep of Crown in UMAC play Saturday at Ted Whereatt Field.
The Yellowjackets (10-20, 5-5 UMAC) won the opener 7-3. Both teams traded single runs in the early innings, before UWS pulled away with a three-run seventh inning.
Rich Vanden Branden earned the win, allowing three runs and seven hits over seven innings, while adding five strikeouts and three walks.
Matthew Boyde led UWS with two hits and three RBIs.
The Yellowjackets used a six-run eighth inning to secure an 8-6 win in the nightcap.
Crown (12-9, 3-2) led 5-0 through five innings, before UWS scored all eight runs in the final two innings.
Former Superior Spartan Nik Mattson went 2-for-4 with a pair of RBIs and drove in the game-winning run on a single in the eighth.
UWS hosts Northwestern at 1:30 p.m. today.
UW-Superior......... 000 202 100 2 — 7 16 1
Macalester............. 200 000 300 0 — 5 12 3
UW-Superior......... 320 110 0 — 7 11 1
Macalester............. 007 100 x — 8 13 0
Crown.................. 100 101 000 — 3 8 3
UW-Superior......... 101 011 30x — 7 10 3
Crown.................. 102 200 001 — 6 8 0
UW-Superior 000 000 26x — 8 8 0