May 12, 2012
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - The Boilermaker softball team battled back from a 7-0 deficit but couldn't quite pull off the comeback, falling 8-5 to No. 22 Michigan in Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader. All eight of Michigan's runs were unearned, while Purdue earned four of its five.
Purdue scored its five runs on six hits and four errors, while allowing the Wolverines eight runs on five hits and five errors. Senior Molly Garst led the Boilermaker bats with two hits and two runs.
Sara Driesenga (9-10) picked up the win for Michigan, despite giving up three runs in four and two thirds innings. Haylie Wagner threw the final two and a third for the Wolverines. Senior Katie Hackney (7-4) struck out two and allowed just eight hits and no earned runs in the complete game effort for Purdue.
The Boilermakers put a runner on in each of the first three innings, but could not score. Junior Erika Petruzzi drew a two-out walk in the first and was joined by junior Ashley Courtney, who reached on an error. A fielder's choice play at second base ended the inning. Freshman Ashley Burkhardt reached on a fielding error in the second, before a fielder's choice capped the stanza. Petruzzi came through with the game's first hit, a two-out single in the third, but was erased by another fielder's choice.
Michigan broke through with seven unearned runs in the third inning as the Boilermakers committed four errors. A walk and two infield singles filled the basepaths with one out. An error on a fielder's choice play at the play allowed two runs. A sacrifice fly added a third. A single to center field scored a runner from third. Two more miscues and double brought in the other three runs, before a liner to the pitcher finally ended the stanza.
Purdue got one run back as sophomore Danielle Fletcher lifted a one-out solo home run to left in the fourth. The long ball was her team-best eighth of the season.
The Wolverines added another unearned run in the fourth, combining an error, a sacrifice bunt and a sacrifice fly.
Courtney plated two runs for the Boilermakers with a bases loaded single up the middle in the fifth. Garst got things started with a one-out single. An error put sophomore Lindsey Rains aboard and a walk to Petruzzi set up Courtney's hit. Another error after the Courtney single put sophomore Andie Varsho on base and prompted a Michigan pitching change. A strikeout kept Purdue from cutting into the deficit further.
The Boilermakers continued to rally in the seventh with two runs, which came via a two-run homer to right center by Rains. The long ball plated Garst, who led off the inning with a bunt single. Petruzzi drew her third walk after the home run, but was left stranded by a pop up and two grounders.
Purdue (31-21, 13-9 Big Ten) looks to wrap up the regular season with a win in Game 2 of the doubleheader.