Nebraska drops opener at Northwestern
Behind a five-run second inning, Northwestern handed the Nebraska softball team a 6-1 loss in the opening game of a four-game series Friday afternoon in Evanston, Ill.
EVANSTON, Ill. (Nebraska Athletics) – Behind a five-run second inning, Northwestern handed the Nebraska softball team a 6-1 loss in the opening game of a four-game series Friday afternoon in Evanston, Ill.
Northwestern produced five of its six runs and six of its 10 hits in the five-run second inning. With the win, the Wildcats improved to 27-14 on the season while Nebraska fell to 21-20.
Junior right-hander Courtney Wallace took the loss for the Huskers, snapping her personal three-game winning streak. Wallace (10-8) allowed a season-high six earned runs while tossing her seventh complete game of the year.
Northwestern All-American Danielle Williams (16-5) earned the win, allowing only one run in her four-hitter while totaling 13 strikeouts.
Offensively for Nebraska, senior Tristen Edwards reached base in every trip to the plate, the 10th time she has accomplished that feat in her 37 games this season. On Friday, Edwards was hit by a pitch in her first plate appearance, walked in her next trip to the plate and homered in her only official at bat. Edwards increased her season total to 54 “free passes” (combined walks and hit-by-pitches), tying the Nebraska season record set by her older sister Taylor in 2014.
Sophomore Brooke Andrews finished 2-for-3 to record her sixth multi-hit game of the season. Junior Peyton Glatter added Nebraska’s fourth hit.
Northwestern scored five times in the second inning to take a 5-0 lead. The Wildcats grabbed a 1-0 lead on a leadoff home run from Morgan Newport that snapped Wallace’s 21.0-inning scoreless streak. A two-run homer three batters leader pushed the lead to 3-0 before a pair of two-out RBI singles capped the five-run inning.
Nebraska mounted a threat in the top of the fourth but ran into some bad luck. Edwards led off with a walk and Wallace reached on a one-out error. Glatter then hit a hard grounder that was headed up the middle and into center field, but it was hit so hard that Edwards was unable to get out of the way, and the ball hit Edwards for the second out of the inning. Williams then kept the Huskers off the scoreboard with an inning-ending strikeout.
Northwestern then used its third home run of the game to stretch the lead to 6-0 in the bottom of the fourth.
Edwards put Nebraska on the board when she led off the sixth inning with a solo home run, but that was the only run the Huskers could muster off Williams.
Nebraska and Northwestern continue their weekend series with a doubleheader on Saturday. Game one starts at 1 p.m. and game two is set for 4 p.m. and will be televised live on the Big Ten Network.