The Gustavus Adolphus softball teamed christened the Hollingsworth Field softball diamond with a split against UW-La Crosse on Saturday afternoon in St. Peter, Minn. The Gusties won game one 4-2 on a walk-off homer by Jen Ulmen in the bottom of the ninth inning. UW-La Crosse took game two 5-3 with a pair of late-game runs to earn the split. Gustavus moves to 7-9 on the season, while UW-La Crosse moves to 14-7.
The Gusties got on the board first in game one, taking a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second when Kelly Myers doubled to the left-center gap to score Kirsten Prunty and Amber Hohenstein. Myers was 2-for-3 with a double and two RBI in the game.
Pitcher Kate Rentschler had her change-up working from the start of the game, giving up just two hits in the first five innings. The Eagles got to Rentschler in the sixth inning, tying the game at 2-2 when Lauren Schaller singled up the middle to bring in a pair of runs.
Niether team could score the game-winning run in the remaining frame as the contest went into extra innings. UW-La Crosse left one runner on base in both the eighth and ninth innings, yet couldn’t bring in the go-ahead run.
Prunty got the rally going in the bottom of the ninth with a one-out double to the right-center gap. Ulmen fouled multiple pitches off in her at-bat before connecting and driving the ball over the left field fence. Mitch Anderson was the first player to score a touchdown on Hollingsworth Field in 2007, and Jen Ulmen will go down in the history books as the first player to hit a home run on the same playing surface.
Rentschler improved to 6-5 with the win, giving up two runs on seven hits in a complete game performance. Lauren Beres suffered the loss (5-6), giving up four funs on 10 hits.
Gustavus’ Jenny Ewert and MacKenzie Dalton also had multiple hit games. Ewert went 2-for-4 with a double, and Dalton was 2-for-3.
The Eagles turned the tables in game two, scoring three runs in the first inning to take a 3-0 lead. Schaller tripled to score Jenna Ahnen, then later got home on a passed ball for their third run of the inning.
The Gusties would chip away one run at a time, scoring in the second, third, and fourth innings to tie the game at 3-3. Sam Brenemen knocked in Myers with a single in the second inning, Wendorff plated Dalton with a single in the third, and Amy Lynch slipped under an attempted tag between third base and home to score in the fourth.
After a scoreless fifth inning, the Eagles took a 5-3 advantage with one run in the sixth and another in the seventh. Natalie Stoll hit a dinger in the seventh to give UW-La Crosse a two-run edge.
Rentschler suffered the loss (6-6) on the hill for the Gusties, going six innings and giving up five runs (4 earned). Lacey Probst got the win, improving to 7-1 after giving up three runs on seven hits.
The Gusties will begin their MIAC season with a doubleheader against St. Catherine on Tuesday, April 5 in St. Paul. First pitch for game one is set for 4:00 p.m.