Nittany Lions Take Game One of Series, 4-1
April 27, 2007
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Indiana put a run on the board within the first two batters of the game, but Penn State scored a pair of unearned runs in the third inning to break a 1-1 tie and never looked back, adding one more to top the Hoosiers on Friday, April 27, 4-1.
IU (21-29, 1-14 Big Ten) jumped on the board quickly, scoring a run in the top of the first to hold an early lead. Junior Julia Hamilton led off the game with her third triple of the season to get things going, and sophomore Emily Bergeson followed with a deep sacrifice fly to left to knock in the Hoosiers' lone run.
The Nittany Lions (23-18, 4-5 Big Ten) countered in the bottom of the second inning, as pitcher Ashley Esparza led off with a double to right, and came in on a single by Kayce Zielinksi one out later to tie the game.
Penn State would take the lead in the bottom of the next inning, as Shana Madura led off with a bloop single to center and came around on a three-base IU throwing error on Meghan Wolfer's sacrifice attempt. After a walk put runners on the corners with just one out, Jen Acunto brought in Wolfer with a sac bunt of her own.
Zielinski put Penn State up by three in the fourth, leading off the frame with a home run to right center.
The Hoosiers nearly scored in the sixth inning, which started with Hamilton being hit by a pitch. Two outs later, Jennilee Huddleston reached on an error by Madura at third, and Hamilton tried to score on the play. Acunto was backing Madura up on the play, however, and fired home to get Hamilton by a two steps.
Sophomore Sarah Padove gave Indiana hope in the top of the seventh, leading off with a chopper over Madura's head. But Esparza got a 6-4-3 double play to erase pinch-runner Kelli Ritchison, and fielded Tory Yamaguchi's grounder herself to end the game.
Esparza (11-9) turned in a superb performance, limiting the Hoosiers to just four hits and striking out 11. IU pitcher Monica Wright dropped to 14-17 on the season, as she allowed four runs, two earned, on six hits and four walks in 6 innings.
Hamilton finished the contest 2-for-2 with a run scored, and with her swipe of second base in the top of the third, matched her career high with her 17th stolen base of the season.
Zielinksi finished 2-for-2 with a pair of runs driven in, while Esparza was 2-for-2.
The Hoosiers and Nittany Lions will wrap up their series with a game on Saturday, April 28, at 12 p.m.
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