April 29, 2009
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Boilermaker softball team split its Wednesday doubleheader with Illinois, nabbing a 4-1 win in Game 1 with a solid pitching effort and dropping a 10-6 decision in Game 2 which featured 13 Illini hits.
Purdue reached the 10-win milestone in Big Ten play with a 4-1 win over Illinois in Game 1 of Wednesday's twin bill.
Sophomore Suzie Rzegocki struck out six in a complete-game gem, moving to 22-10 on the year with the victory, while Monica Perry dropped to 21-13 with the complete-game loss for Illinois.
Purdue racked up its four runs on four hits and an Illini error, while Illinois posted its one unearned run on two hits and a Boilermaker miscue.
The Boilermakers struck first, putting up a pair of runs on a hit in the bottom of the first. Freshman Molly Garst put Purdue on the board with an RBI single to right, driving in junior Liane Horiuchi was hit by a pitch to start the stanza and stole second. Garst swiped second and third, before coming home on a sacrifice fly by junior Jenna Alexander.
The Illini got one run back on an obstruction call in the third. Danielle Zymkowitz reached on a fielder's choice. Audrey Gallien doubled to left, pushing Zymkowitz to third. She turned for home and was tagged out at the plate, but the Boilermaker catcher was called for blocking the base path on the play, allowing the run to count. A pair of popups stranded Gallien at second.
Purdue tacked on two insurance runs on two hits and an error in the bottom of the inning. Senior Kelly Miller led off with a single to third base and stole second. A ground out pushed Miller to third, allowing to her to score as the shortstop dropped senior Katie Mitchell's towering pop up the following play. A wild pitch sent Mitchell to second, from which she scored on Alexander's single to center field.
The Boilermakers threatened in the fourth as senior Candace Curtis doubled to center field and went to third on a ground out. Another grounder, however, prevented Purdue from adding to its lead.
Neither team would advance another runner past second base the rest of the contest.
The bats came alive for both teams in Game 2 as they combined for 16 runs on 21 hits including eight for extra bases, while the pitchers managed just four strikeouts .
The Fighting Illini racked up 10 runs on 13 hits and an error in the night cap, while holding Purdue to six runs on eight hits. Senior Alicia Spack went 3-for-3 with two doubles and a home run to lead the Purdue bats, while freshman Molly Garst added two hits. The Boilermakers tallied three long balls in the losing effort.
Monica Perry (22-13) struck out just one in the complete-game victory for Illinois, while sophomore Suzie Rzegocki (22-11) was saddled with the loss after allowing five unearned runs in two and two thirds innings. Seniors Dana Alcocer and Ashley DiDomenico also saw time in the circle for the Boilermakers.
Both teams stranded runners in the first and went down in order in the second. The Fighting Illini then exploded for six unearned runs on four hits in the top of the third. A walk and an infield single put two on with one out. The Boilermaker shortstop then committed a fielding error, filling the bases. A ground out to second base should have marked the third out of the inning, but instead drove in the first run. A Kelley Wedel single to center field made it 2-0. A walk put two on with two outs, prompting a pitching change. Alcocer took over in the circle and allowed a pair of doubled, plating four more runs. A fielder's choice play at third wrapped up the stanza with two aboard.
Spack doubled off the wall in right center to start the Purdue half of the third. A passed ball moved her to third with two outs, but a grounder to second base kept the Boilermakers from scoring.
After the Illini wasted a fourth-inning double, senior Katie Mitchell snapped the UI shutout bid with a solo home that dipped underneath the scoreboard in right field.
Illinois got the run back in the fifth as the Boilermakers hit a batter with bases loaded. A single, a fielder's choice and a walk set up the RBI ding. A fly out prevented further damage.
Purdue cut the deficit to 7-3 as two runs scored on a Garst single to right field. The base knock drove in Spack, who tapped a one-out double off the top of the wall in left center, and junior Liane Horiuchi, who drew a two-out walk. Garst swiped second, but was left stranded.
The Illini answered back with three runs on five hits in the sixth. Illinois posted three singles and a fielder's choice to fill the bases. The Boilermakers hit the next batter to bring a in a run. A single up the middle tacked on another and prompted Purdue to bring in DiDomenico to pitch. After allowing an RBI single to right, DiDomenico forced a grounder to second base to strand three Illini and end the inning.
Trailing 10-3 going into the final stanza, Purdue managed three runs on three hits, including two home runs, but it was not enough to pull off the comeback. Spack rapped her third hit of the game, depositing a long ball over the left field wall with one away. Senior Kelly Miller reached on a bunt single and came in to score as Horiuchi lifted a dinger over the wall in right center. A grounder to the pitcher and a popup on the infield capped the game.
The Boilermakers (27-18, 10-8 Big Ten) return to action at 4 p.m. Thursday when they take on IPFW in Fort Wayne, Ind. Purdue will then face off with IUPUI in Indianapolis on Saturday in a 4 p.m. doubleheader, before wrapping up the regular season and Big Ten play at Indiana on May 9.