Burgard Tough; Purdue Northwest Softball Drops Pair to No. 15 Grand View

Hammond, Ind. – Despite a solid pitching performance in game two by freshman Samantha Burgard (Crystal Lake, Ill./Crystal Lake South), the Purdue Northwest softball team lost both games of its Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) doubleheader with No. 15 ranked Grand Valley State University (Mich.) Saturday afternoon at Fifth Third Bank Field in Dowling Park in Hammond, Ind.  The Pride managed just one hit in an 8-0 loss in five innings in game one and could not get the timely hit in a tough 1-0 loss in the late game.


The Lakers jumped out to an early 3-0 lead behind three RBI singles in the top of the first inning of game one.  GVSU added three more runs in the top of the second inning with two of those runs coming off a RBI double and a RBI single.  A sacrifice fly in the third inning extended the lead to 7-0 and the visitors scored the final run in the top of the fifth.


Freshman Courtney Blackwell (Whiting, Ind./Whiting) took the loss (4-6) for PNW throwing the first inning and allowing six hits, five runs (all earned) and a walk with one strikeout.  Junior Mia Stevens (Rensselaer, Ind./South Suburban CC/Kankakee Valley) pitched the final four innings and gave up seven hits, three runs (all earned) and no walks with a pair of strikeouts.  Sophomore Taylor Mendenhall (Brownsburg, Ind./St. Joseph’s College/Brownsburg) recorded the Pride’s only hit in the game, a single to left field in the bottom of the seventh.


Burgard threw well for Purdue Northwest in game two pitching all seven frames and allowing just six hits, one run (earned) and two walks with a strikeout.  However, the one run proved to the difference as she suffered her third loss of the season (4-3).  Grand Valley State scored on a RBI double to the gap in left centerfield in the top of the first inning and rode a two-hit shutout by senior Allie Grys to secure the victory.  Juniors Kalyn Learnard (Fairmount, Ill./Kankakee CC/Caitlin) and Taylor Kotzo (Munster, Ind./Munster) each posted a hit for the Pride in game two.


Purdue Northwest (17-14 overall/7-7 GLIAC) continues conference play on Sunday, April 8, with a home doubleheader against Davenport University (Mich.).  The first game of the pair is scheduled for a noon CT start at Dowling Park.