Bases Loaded Walk Downs Hoosiers In Seventh at Illinois
April 16, 2009
URBANA, Ill. - Senior Ashley Hobbs hit her first home run as a Hoosier, a towering drive over the scoreboard in left center field, but Illinois got back-to-back home runs in the fourth inning to tie the game before drawing a bases loaded walk in the seventh to take the 3-2 win. Eight different IU batters picked up hits in the game, led by Sara Olson's two hits and an RBI.
Hobbs (2-11) took the hard luck loss in game two, coming on in relief in the fourth inning and keeping Illinois off the scoreboard by not allowing a hit until the decisive seventh inning. Monica Perry (20-10) picked up the win, striking out 12 while giving up nine hits and just one earned run.
Indiana (7-30, 3-9 Big Ten) struck first in the top of the second inning when Hobbs stepped into the batters box, still in search of her first hit in an IU uniform after transferring from Evansville this season. The Brownsburg, Ind., native connected for a no-doubt home run to give Indiana a 1-0 lead.
Emily Bergeson reached on an error with one out in the third and moved all the way to third on a pair of wild pitches by Perry. Sara Olson followed with a double to right field that hit the wall in the air, just missing an opposite field home run, and gave the Hoosiers a 2-0 lead in the process.
Then Illinois (24-12, 7-4 Big Ten) struck back in the bottom of the fourth on back-to-back home runs by Meredith Hackett and Ashley Conrad to tie the game at 2-2.
In the top of the sixth, Indiana loaded the bases with no one out for the heart of the order, looking to break the tie and earn a series split with the Illini. But Perry had other ideas, as she beared down and struck out the middle of the IU lineup to keep the game tied.
The Illini then put back-to-back singles together to start the bottom of the seventh and a sacrifice bunt moved the runners into scoring position with one out. Audrey Gallien then hit a sharp ground ball to third that IU's Kristin King gloved and tagged the runner at third for the second out of the inning. Hobbs intentionally walked Hackett to bring Conrad to the plate with the bases loaded. Conrad worked the count full before Hobbs pay-off pitch was a little inside for ball four to force in the winning run.
Olson allowed two runs on five hits with three strikeouts and walks and did not figure in the decision.
Indiana will return to the IU Softball Field on Saturday for a doubleheader against Tulsa starting at 2:30 p.m.
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