NORTHWESTERN SWEEPS GOPHERS IN BIG TEN SOFTBALL TWINBILL
The Minnesota softball team dropped a pair of games to Northwestern by scores of 5-0 and 2-1 on Friday. The Wildcats improve to 13-13, 4-2 in the Big Ten, while Minnesota falls to 23-13-1, 2-4 in the Big Ten.
In the opener, Northwestern used three home runs and solid pitching by Brie Brown to defeat the Gophers. In the bottom of the fifth inning, Wildcat third baseman Gretchen Barnes hit a solo home run to left field to give Northwestern a 1-0. The hit was Northwestern's first baserunner of the game, as Gopher starter Piper Marten had retired the first 13 batters she faced. In the sixth inning, first baseman Alyson Schulz hit a three-run home run and Barnes followed with her second home run of the game and third of the season to complete the scoring. Brown scattered five hits and struck out five batters in recording her fifth shutout of the season.
Northwestern took a 1-0 lead in the nightcap when Robin Pettinger homered in the top of the fifth inning. Minnesota tied the game in the bottom of the fifth inning. Veronica Roberts singled, and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Roberts stole third base on the front half of a double steal and scored on a Northwestern throwing error. The Wildcats won the game in the top half of the seventh inning on a sacrifice fly by catcher J.C. Kira. Angie Recknor took the loss, allowing both runs (one earned) in 5 1/3 innings.
Minnesota continues its Big Ten weekend with a two-game series at 12th-ranked Iowa. The Gophers and Hawkeyes will play a single game on Saturday at 2 p.m.
Northwestern 5, Minnesota 0 Minnesota 000 000 0-0 5 0 Northwestern 000 014 x-5 6 0 Marten, Green (6) and Smith. Brown and Kira. WP-Brown (10-10). LP-Marten (15-8). HR-(NU) Barnes 2 (3), Schulz (3). Northwestern 2, Minnesota 1 Northwestern 000 010 1-2 5 1 Minnesota 000 010 0-1 4 2 Schwendimann and Kira. Recknor, Marten (5), Recknor (6), Marten (7) and Smith. WP-Schwendimann (3-3). LP-Recknor (6-4). HR-(NU) Pettinger (1). BIG TEN STANDINGS Michigan 3-0 17-11-1 Iowa 4-1 27- 7 Northwestern 4-2 13-13 Wisconsin 3-2 21-14 Illinois 2-2 32-14 Ohio State 2-2 25-11 Purdue 2-3 25-11-1 Indiana 2-3 12-22 MINNESOTA 2-4 23-13-1 Penn State 1-3 19-15 Michigan State 0-3 13-25 Friday's Games Northwestern 5-2, Minnesota 0-1 Illinois at Ohio State (DH) Michigan 4, Purdue 3 (first game) Indiana 4, Michigan State 3 (first game) Iowa 3, Wisconsin 1 (first game) Saturday's Games (All times Central) Minnesota at Iowa, 2 Purdue at Michigan, 1 Indiana at Michigan State, 1 Wisconsin at Northwestern, 2 Illinois at Penn State, 5 Sunday's Results Minnesota at Iowa, 1 Purdue at Michigan, noon Indiana at Michigan State, noon Illinois at Penn State, noon Wisconsin at Northwestern, 1