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TEMPE, ARIZ. - Sophomore shortstop Tyler Walker led off the game with a solo home run, and junior pitcher Sara Moulton dominated by taking a no-hitter into the final inning, as Minnesota defeated Northern Iowa by a score of 5-0 at the Littlewood Classic on Saturday afternoon.
Moulton surrendered a one-out infield single in the seventh to finish with a one-hitter. She struck out 12 of the 23 batters she faced in the game and improved to 2-4 this season.
Walker's home run, her first of the season, gave the Gophers a quick 1-0 lead. Minnesota stretched its advantage to 3-0 in the third, when sophomore right fielder Erica Meyer singled to score freshman left fielder Sydney Fabian. Meyer, who had reached third on a fielding error by the Panthers' centerfielder, then scored on a fielder's choice grounder by sophomore third baseman Kaitlyn Richardson.
Minnesota (2-5) increased its lead to 5-0 in the sixth, as freshman first baseman Paige Palkovich hit her second triple of the season, and scored on a sacrifice bunt by sophomore second baseman Erika Smyth. Freshman designated player Kayla Wenner then followed with her first collegiate home run.
Minnesota and Northern Iowa will play a second game later tonight, with first pitch tentatively scheduled for 8:30 p.m. CT. The starting time could change, based on the length of the games ahead of it. On Sunday, the Gophers will wrap up the Littlewood Classic, facing No. 3/3 Arizona State at 2:15 p.m. CT.
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