May 10, 2013
LINCOLN, Neb. - Third-seeded Minnesota advanced to the semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament with a 4-0 victory against 11th-seeded Penn State on Friday at Bowlin Stadium.
Junior right-handed pitcher Sara Moulton improved to 30-9 on the season by throwing a complete-game shutout against the Nittany Lions (16-34), who had advanced to today's game with a 5-2 upset win against Illinois on Thursday.
Offensively, the Gophers were led by senior designated player Alex Davis, who went 2-for-3 with a double and a pair of runs batted in.
Minnesota (34-16) opened the scoring with a pair of runs in the bottom of the second. Freshman right fielder Kayla Wenner drew a one-out walk, and moved to second on a groundout by sophomore second baseman Erika Smyth before Davis doubled down the right field line to give the Gophers a 1-0 lead.
With two outs and runners at first and second, sophomore shortstop Tyler Walker popped up behind the bag at third, but left fielder Shannon Hutchinson dropped the ball, allowing Davis to score an unearned run.
In the fourth, Wenner once again reached on a walk, and she stole second base on the first pitch to Smyth. Smyth moved Wenner to third with one out on a sacrifice bunt, and Davis singled to right to drive in another run.
The Gophers added their final run in the fifth, as senior catcher Kari Dorle reached base on a walk, moved to second on a groundout by sophomore third baseman Kaitlyn Richardson and scored from second when Bree Blanchette reached on a throwing error by the pitcher.
Minnesota advances to Saturday's semifinals, where it will face Nebraska, which defeated Purdue by a score of 3-2 on Friday. First pitch is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. CT, with Minnesota as the home team in the game, and it will be televised live on the Big Ten Network.
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