Softball scores even record off the bat

Volk picks up 600th career coaching win


Sophomore pitcher Bella Matthias appeared in four games over this year’s spring break, with a 4.71 ERA during the Warhawks’ trip. As a freshman, she posted a 1.31 ERA and an 18-4 record, with more than 138 innings pitched.

Jack Miller, Assistant Sports Editor

The No.18 UW-Whitewater women’s softball team started off their 2018 season in the team’s National Training Center spring break trip March 22-29 in Clermont, Florida.
The Warhawks, who amassed a 7-7 record during the trip, kicked off the season with back-to-back losses to a pair of Massachusetts schools. First was a 10-3 loss to Tufts University followed by No.14 Williams College defeating the Warhawks 8-5 to close out day one of the tournament.
The Warhawks found their groove in the second day of action. The team won their first game 11-0 versus New Paltz University (N.Y.), then triumphing in their second game 12-0 over Plymouth State University (N.H.).
In a double header March 24, UW-W split a pair of games against No.20 St. Thomas (Minn.). The Warhawks narrowly dropped the first game 5-4, but bounced back with a convincing 9-1 victory in their second game.
The next day, the Warhawks avenged the day one loss to Tufts University with a 6-3 victory. Later in the day Whitewater defeated Wellesley College (Mass.) 10-2.
After a day off, the Warhawks returned to action March 27 with two narrow defeats. Williams once again outlasted UW-W, this time with a 5-3 score. The Warhawks then dropped their second game of the day with a 3-2 extra innings loss to Kalamazoo College (Mich.).
The Warhawks got major contributions from their pitching staff the following day, keeping a clean slate both games. The team defeated Mount Saint Vincent College (N.Y.) 8-0, then squeaked out a 2-0 shutout over Middlebury College.
The victory against Middlebury gave head coach Brenda Volk her 600th career win.
UW-W ended their spring break trip with a pair of losses March 29. First, with an 8-3 loss to No.8 Luther College (Iowa), then a 10-6 defeat to St. Olaf College (Minn.).
Offensively, senior outfielder Mallory Klotz paced the Warhawks in Florida with a .419 batting average and 13 RBIs. Sophomore outfielder/second baseman Megan Schweitzer, a transfer from Iowa State University, hit for .389, including a five-hit game against Tufts.
Junior pitcher Julia Camardo left Florida with 31 innings pitched and a 2.43 ERA, including four appearances of at least three innings that resulted in her allowing earned runs. Freshman pitcher Makena Creekmore appeared in five games, posting a 1.50 ERA.
Despite the Warhawks playing .500 ball during their trip, the team isn’t too worried with the early results.
“When you look at our record, it doesn’t look great,” senior outfielder Mallory Klotz said. “But we aren’t at all concerned. We definitely had some great moments.”
One of those great moments was Volk picking up her 600th career win with the Warhawks victory over Middlebury March 28.
“It means so much,” Klotz said. “We had a big celebration for her after that 600th win, but right away she said, ‘okay, let’s go get 601.’ She just wanted to get that next one. She talks how she loves winning, as well all do. At the end of the day it’s so much more than that. We just tell how much we appreciate her. She’s one of the best coaches we’ve ever had. That isn’t just reflective of her record. Even if we were 0-50, I would still say the same thing. She is just an amazing person and an amazing coach.”
Results aside, the Warhawks’ spring trip may pay dividends down the road for other reasons.
“Our team really came together this past week in Florida, and although we didn’t finish how we would have liked, we did take away many positives as well as found some areas where we need to improve in,” sophomore pitcher Bella Matthias said.  “We knew going down there that we would be challenged, and I believe that those games will make us better throughout the rest of the season.”

Up next for the Warhawks is a game against Dubuque University April 3. The team will then host the 2018  home opener April 5 versus Carthage College.