1999 Pioneer Softball Review

posted 5/12/99

4 Pioneers are all-conference

Four UW-Platteville softball players were named to the all-Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference East Division team.

Jen Kneeland and Beth Shaw earned first team honors, while Becky Ahlbrecht and Lisa Van Natta were honorable mention selections.

Kneeland (Sr., Fond du Lac/St. Mary's Springs) earned her third straight honor. She led the team with a .369 overall batting average and raised that to .409 in conference play. The leftfielder also topped the Pioneers with 26 RBIs. A good contact hitter, Kneeland only struck out once in 111 at-bats.

Shaw (Fr., South Milwaukee) started all 41 games at third base, hitting .360 on the year with 10 doubles, and two home runs, including a grand slam in a 4-0 victory over UW-Oshkosh April 14. She led UWP and ranked ninth in the WIAC with 45 hits.

Albrecht (So., New Richmond) earned her second straight WIAC honor in her second year of playing. She hit .352 with 10 doubles and 2 home runs with 24 RBIs. Albrecht scored a team-high 36 times, which ranked her fourth in the WIAC. She also led the team with 107 assists at shortstop.

Van Natta (Fr., Cuba City) was an honorable mention right fielder after hitting .333 overall and a team-high .429 in WIAC games. She played in 37 games as a freshman, starting 35 of them.

The Pioneers, with Kneeland as the lone senior, finished 16-25 on the year.

Full WIAC all-conference listing

posted 5/9/99

Softball team goes 2-2 at WIAC tourney

UW-Platteville finished 2-2 in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference softball tournament Friday and Saturday at UW-Stevens Point.

Jamie Larson held UW-Stout to one hit in the play-in game Friday, as the Pioneers beat the Blue Devils 8-0. Lisa Van Atta, Beth Shaw and Emily Elliott each had two hits in the contest.

That win moved the Pioneers to a game with the top-seeded UW-Whitewater Warhawks, who beat the Pioneers 8-0. Erin Esser and Nora Giles combined for four of Platteville's six hits.

The Pioneers then staved off elimination by defeating UW-River Falls 2-1. Becky Albrecht singled home Van Atta in the bottom of the seventh for the win. Jess Van Lannen went the distance for the victory, while catcher Amy Pennekamp had a pair of hits.

UW-Stevens Point then ended the Pioneers season by handing UWP a 4-1 loss. The Pioneers finished 16-25 overall.

UW-Stevens Point was eliminated by UW-Eau Claire 2-1 in one semifinal, and UW-Oshkosh upset UW-Whitewater 3-1 in another, leaving three teams with one loss in the tournament. Oshkosh beat Eau Claire 7-6, setting up a Titan match with Whitewater. The Warhawks prevailed 2-1 to claim the WIAC title.

posted 5/1/99

Pioneers split at UWW tourney

UW-Platteville took fourth place at the eight-team UW-Whitewater tournament Friday and Saturday. The Pioneers also dropped a 5-1 game to Ripon.

Before the tournament began, the Pioneers made up their second game against the host Warhawks, which had been postponed by rain. For the second time this year, the Warhawks beat the Pioneers in extra innings, winning 3-2 on a sacrifice fly in the eighth inning.

The Pioneers lost 5-1 to Augustana Friday, then rebounded with wins over UW-Superior 9-1 (Friday) and Ripon 8-5 (Saturday) to qualify for the third-place game. UW-La Crosse edged the Pioneers 2-1 to claim third.

UW-Platteville enters the WIAC tournament next weekend at UW-Stevens Point.

posted 4/27/99

Pioneers' rally comes up short

UW-Platteville rallied to within one run of UW-La Crosse, but ended the game with the tying run on second base in a 3-2 loss at La Crosse Wednesday.

The host Eagles also won the nightcap, 6-2.

Pinch-hitter Mandy Henning hit her first home run in the top of the seventh, slicing the La Crosse lead to 3-2. Erin Esser singled to center and advanced to second on a groundout. However, Eagles' pitcher Emily Nelson got out of the jam and preserved the win.

Lisa Van Atta, Beth Shaw and Angie Peterson each had two hits for the Pioneers.

As a team, the Pioneers were limited to two total hits in the second game and fell to 12-20 on the year. UW-La Crosse improved to 21-10.

posted 4/27/99

Pioneers drop 2 to Blugolds

UW-Platteville dropped a pair of games to the Great Lakes Region's fourth-ranked team, losing at UW-Eau Claire 6-1 and 8-2 Tuesday.

The Pioneers led 1-0 in the fourth inning of game one, scoring the first earned run off ace Heidi Bergstrom in her last nine appearances. Lisa Van Atta, Becky Ahlbrecht and Beth Shaw strung together singles for the run. The Blugolds, however, tied the score in the bottom of the fourth and added two in the fifth and three in the sixth for the win.

Three UWP errors led to three first-inning runs in game two. The Blugolds tacked on four in the next inning and went on to the 8-2 victory. Catcher Jamie Karschbaum had a pair of hits and drove in both Pioneer runs.

UWEC is now 28-9 on the year. The 12-18 Pioneers play at UW-La Crosse Wednesday, beginning at 3 p.m. They close the regular season at the UW-Whitewater Invitational Friday and Saturday.

posted 4/19/99

Pioneers go 2-3

The UW-Platteville softball team went 2-3 at the Augustana Invitational Saturday and Sunday. UW-Platteville beat Marycrest International 5-0 and Monmouth 4-2 before falling to UW-River Falls 2-1, Benedictine 12-8 and UW-Whitewater 6-0. The Pioneers are now 12-16 on the season. UW-Oshkosh won the 12-team tournament.

posted 4/13/99

Shaw's slam lifts Pioneers to win

Freshman Beth Shaw provided all the scoring when she slugged hit a grand slam in the fifth inning, lifting UW-Platteville to a 4-0 victory in the second game of a WIAC doubleheader against UW-Oshkosh Wednesday night.

The Titans took the first game 8-3.

Both teams are now 10-13 overall. Platteville is 1-4 in WIAC play, while Oshkosh is 1-3.

The Pioneers loaded the bases with two outs in the fifth. Lisa Van Atta singled, Jen Kneeland reached on an error and Becky Ahlbrecht singled, setting the stage for Shaw's slam. Jess Van Lannen went the distance on the mound, scattering 8 hits.

posted 4/3/99

Jenny Walter Memorial Softball Tournament

Hosted by UW-Platteville

The UW-Platteville softball team broke out the bats in taking two of three games in the rain-shortened Jenny Walter Memorial Softball Tournament Friday and Saturday at the UWP Softball Complex.

After dropping the opening game of the tournament 10-6 to Clarke, the Pioneers rebounded to crush Mount St. Clare 23-4 and Mount Senario 19-4.

The last game of the tournament was rained out Saturday. The Pioneers were 2-1 in Pool B, while Clarke was 2-0 but was losing to 1-1 Mount St. Clare 6-4 in the fifth inning Saturday when the downpours finally halted play. Should all three teams been 2-1, the Pioneers would have advanced to the title game. Simpson and St.Ambrose were both 2-0 and tied 0-0 after seven innings when the tournament was called.

The inaugural Jenny Walter Memorial Tournament is named after the Pioneers' late shortstop, who was killed in a car crash in December, 1996.

The Walter family threw out the first pitch before the Pioneers' clash with Clarke.

The Crusaders jumped on the Pioneers for five runs in the first inning. The Pioneers mounted a late comeback, capped off by Beky Alhbrecht's grand slam. It was only the fifth bases-loaded home run in UWP history. Clarke, however, held on for the 10-6 win.

The Pioneers demolished the record books in Friday's second game, setting a new mark for hits with 20 and tying another record with 23 runs against Mount St. Clare. Ahlbrecht and Beth Shaw each tied the Pioneer record with four hits apiece, while Jen Kneeland and Jenny Meighan had three hits each. Lisa Van Atta hit her first career home run in the 23-4 win.

Even a steady rain couldn't cool off the Pioneer bats Saturday. The Platteville exploded for 10 runs in the first inning and seven more in the second against Mount Senario in a 19-4 victory. Kneeland's three hits paced a 13-hit attack.

The 9-7 Pioneers have five double-headers in six days. They are at Dubuque Monday, home to UW-Stevens Point Tuesday and to Carroll Wednesday and at Loras Friday and UW-Whitewater Saturday.

Friday's Games

Pool A
Simpson 3, Marycrest International 0
St. Ambrose 7, Edgewood 2
Simpson 13, Edgewood 0
St. Ambrose 17, Marycrest International 2
Pool B
Clarke 10, UW-Platteville 6
Mt. St. Clare 11, Mt. Senario 3
UW-Platteville 23, Mt. St. Clare 4
Clarke 9, Mt. Senario 1

Saturday's Games

UW-Platteville 19, Mt. Senario 4
Edgewood 8, Marycrest International 7

Rest of tournament cancelled because of rain.

Simpson and St. Ambrose were tied 0-0 heading into eighth.

Mount St. Clare led Clarke 6-4 in 5th inning.

Tournament named after Pioneers' late shortstop, who was killed in car accident in December, 1996, at age 20.

posted 4/1/99

Pioneers to hold tournament

The University of Wisconsin-Platteville softball team will hold the inaugural Jenny Walter Tournament Friday and Saturday, April 2-3.

Seven teams will join the Pioneers in the tournament, which honors the late Pioneer shortstop. Jenny Walter was a sophomore at UW-Platteville when she was killed in a car accident in December, 1996. The two-year-old UWP Softball Complex already has a tree planted between the two fields in honor of Jenny Walter. Her family will throw out the first pitch. A player will also be selected at the end of the tournament whose play and sportsmanship best reflect the attitude of Jenny Walter, whose favorite saying was "Keep the Game Going."

Perenniel power Simpson, who won the NCAA III championship in 1997, headlines Pool A, which also includes Edgewood, Marycrest International and St. Ambrose. Pool B consists of Clarke, Mount St. Clare, Mount Senario and UW-Platteville. Each team will play the other three in its pool, beginning Friday at 2 p.m. All teams will play two round-robin games Friday, either at the UWP Softball Complex or at the city's Legion Fields. On Saturday, the teams will play their final two pool play games, beginning at 9 a.m. The teams will then be paired for a final game against the like finisher in the other pool. The two first-place teams meet at 1:45 p.m. All of Saturday's games will be at the UWP Softball Complex.

The Pioneers will bring a 7-6 record into their own tournament.

Friday's Games
Legion Field
Pool A
2:00 Simpson vs. Marycrest International (Field 1)
2:00 Edgewood vs. St. Ambrose (Field 2)
4:00 Simpson vs. Edgewood (Field 1)
4:00 Marycrest Int. vs. St. Ambrose (Field 2)
UWP Softball Complex
Pool B
2:00 UW-Platteville vs. Clarke (Field 1)
2:00 Mt. St. Clare vs. Mt. Senario (Field 2)
4:00 UW-Platteville vs. Mt. St. Clare (Field 1)
4:00 Clarke vs. Mt. Senario (Field 2)
Saturday's Games
UWP Softball Complex
9:00 UW-Platteville vs. Mt. Senario (Field 1)
9:00 Marycrest International vs. Edgewood (Field 2)
10:45 Clarke vs. Mt. St. Clare (Field 1)
10:45 Simpson vs. St. Ambrose (Field 2)
12:30 Third Place vs. Third Place (Field 1)
12:30 Fourth Place vs. Fourth Place (Field 2)
1:45 First Place vs. First Place (Field 1)
1:45 Second Place vs. Second Place (Field 2)

posted 3/29/99

Ahlbrecht's 3 doubles pace win

Shortstop Becky Ahlbrecht tied a nine-year-old school record with three doubles as UW-Platteville defeated St. Scholastica 14-9 in the first round of the Dubuque softball tournament Saturday.

Ahlbrecht's three doubles, which tied Lynn Selman's 1990 mark, led a 14-hit barrage. Beth Shaw and Emily Elliott also had extra-base hits in the game, shortened to five innings because of a time limit.

The hits were harder to come by in the second game, however, as the Pioneers lost to the University of Dubuque 1-0. Jamie Larson, who gave up just four hits, was the hard-luck loser. Shaw had two hits, including a double, for UWP.

The Pioneers lost a pair of games Sunday, falling 4-3 to Carroll College and 8-3 to Loras. Elliott had four hits on the day, while Shaw had two versus Carroll, and Erin Esser had a pair against Loras.

UW-Platteville is now 7-6 on the season. The Pioneers will host the inaugural Jenny Walter Memorial Tournament Friday and Saturday. Eight teams will compete in the tournament, named after the Pioneers' late shortstop.