Softball Closes 2014 Regular Season At No. 19 Nebraska
May 1, 2014
The Indiana softball team travels to Lincoln, Neb. in its final games of the 2014 regular season. The Hoosiers will face No. 19-ranked Nebraska in a three-game series at Bowlin Stadium.
A LOOK AT THE HUSKERS
Nebraska enters the weekend 37-15 on the year under 22-year head coach Rhonda Revelle. The Huskers sit in second place in the B1G standings with a 15-5 mark in conference games. Nebraska comes fresh off a doubleheader at Wisconsin, where the Huskers split with the Bagers in a midweek twinbill.
Nebraska’s squad ranks third in the conference with a .303 batting average this season with seven players hitting above a .300 clip. Taylor Edwards paced the Huskers’ offense with a .373 average in 51 games, while Hailey Decker leads Nebraska in hits (67) and doubles (17).
The Huskers’ pitching staff has combined for a 2.00 ERA, the third lowest in the Big Ten. Emily Lockman and Taylor Edwards have thrown a majority of the innings in the circle, tossing 142.1 and 182.2 innings respectively. The duo have also earned B1G Pitcher of the Week accolades twice this season, with Edwards taking the most recent weekly award.
THE ALL-TIME SERIES
Indiana and Nebraska will play for just the 10th time in program history. IU leads the all-time series 6-3 and has won the previous four meetings dating back to the 2006 campaign.
The two teams first met in 1983 where Indiana topped Nebraska 3-0. The Hoosiers would again take a game from the Huskers in 1986 before Nebraska came back to win the following three contests.
The last time these two teams faced off in a three-game Big Ten series was in 2012. Indiana swept the Huskers in Bloomington to pick up its first complete B1G sweep of the season.
LAST TIME OUT
The Indiana softball team had to wait 60 days and finished its March 1 rain-suspended game with Valparaiso 1,700 miles from where it started, but the Hoosiers would finally close out that contest in a 5-0 victory at Andy Mohr Field on April 30. Indiana would also take game two of yesterday’s contests in five innings, 8-0.
The first five innings were completed in Tucson, Ariz. at the Wildcat Invitational, where the Hoosiers built a 5-0 lead with a five-run outing in the top of the second inning.
Abraham connected on a two-out triple in the fifth, bringing designated player Brooke Boetjer to the plate. She eventually worked her way into a 2-2 count before rain finally washed away the remainder of contests that day at the Wildcat Invitational.
Sixty days later, the Hoosiers and Crusaders would finish the contest nearly 1,700 miles away from where it started.
Meaghan Murphy close out the final 3.0 innings after Lora Olson tossed the first 4.0 in Tucson. Before Murphy took the circle for the conclusion of the contest, Olson held Valparaiso scoreless through four innings and held the Crusaders to just two hits with six strikeouts. Murphy followed with an equally as impressive performance, striking out seven of the final nine outs of the game without allowing a single hit.
The Hoosiers used eight hits for eight runs in game two to aid its efforts in an 8-0 win in five innings over Valparaiso. Saucedo and Tsirigos each earned multiple-hit games against the Crusaders. Tsirigos joined Dotson as one of two Hoosiers to connect on homeruns in the game, both of which in the second inning. Brianna Meyer extended her reached base streak to 22 games with a 1-for-3 performance, while Saucedo’s two hits bring her career total to 218, just four shy of the third most in program history.
Lora Olson got the win in 4.0 shutout innings, allowing just four hits with three strikeouts. Murphy closed out the final inning with a hitless frame in the fifth.
TURNING THINGS AROUND
After a slow start to the 2014 campaign, junior Brianna Meyer has turned things around at the plate, hitting .342 (38-for-111) in the last 37 games. During that span, Meyer has earned a hit in all but 11 contests and has reached base in 33-of-37 games including the previous 22-straight contests. Her 22 game reached base streak is the longest of any active player, surpassing Shannon Cawley’s 17-game stretch in 2012. It also represents the longest reached-base streak since head coach Michelle Gardner took over the program in 2009.
IN GOOD COMPANY
With her second hit against Valparaiso on April 30, redshirt senior Breanna Saucedo earned her 218th career hit. She needs just four more hits to tie the third-most in program history, as Olympian Monica Amendarez connected on 222 career hits from 1995-98. Saucedo is also now just one of five IU players to record 200-or-more career hits in program history and the first to do so since 1998.
Saucedo is also fourth in runs scored (106), recently passing Marjie Ledgerwood’s 102 runs from 1987-90, and is only two stolen bases shy of tying for the sixth-most in program history (Julia Hamilton - 51 from 2005-08).
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