Offense Delivers As Purdue Northwest Softball Sweeps Ferris State
Hammond, Ind. – Combining for 22 hits and 22 runs on the day, the Purdue Northwest softball team swept both its games with Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) foe Ferris State University (Mich.) in dominant fashion on a chilly Saturday afternoon at Fifth Third Bank Field at Dowling Park in Hammond, Ind. The Pride won the first game 14-5 in five innings and then pulled away early for an 8-0 victory in game two in just five innings as well.
Plenty of PNW players had standout performances in Saturday’s sweep. Junior Zoee Anderson (Lafayette, Ind./Jefferson) went a combined 4-for-7 at the plate with a triple, a homer, five runs scored and five RBI. Senior Kyleigh Payne (Bourbonnais, Ill./Kankakee CC/Bishop McNamara) also had a big day for the Pride hitting 4-for-5 with a homer, two doubles, four runs scored and five RBI. Junior Taylor Kotzo (Munster, Ind./Munster) shined as well combining to go 4-for-7 with three doubles, two runs scored and four RBI.
Things looked bleak for Purdue Northwest early in Saturday’s opener as Ferris State scored five runs over the first two innings to go ahead, 5-0. However, in the bottom of the second, the Pride tied the game on a three-run triple down the right field line by Anderson and Payne crushed a two-run shot in the next at-bat over the wall in right centerfield. It was all PNW from there as the hosts proceeded to score nine unanswered runs over the next three innings to end the game early. Senior Holly Pagan (Bartlett, Ill./Bartlett) had a two-run homer to centerfield in the bottom of the fourth inning to aid the effort.
Freshman Courtney Blackwell (Whiting, Ind./Whiting) got the victory (4-4) in the circle for Purdue Northwest in game one. She pitched all five innings and allowed 10 hits, five runs (three earned) and two walks with a pair of strikeouts. Blackwell also held her own as a batter in the game going 2-for-2 with a double, two runs scored and a RBI.
Game two was more of the same as freshman Samantha Burgard (Crystal Lake, Ill./Crystal Lake South) threw a one-hit shutout for the Black & Gold. She gave up just one walk, while striking out four batters for her victory (3-2). The Pride scored three runs in the bottom of the first inning off a two-run double by Kotzo and a throwing error by the Bulldogs. A two-run homer to right field by Anderson highlighted a four-run frame for PNW in the second inning. Payne drove in the game’s final run on a RBI double to centerfield in the third inning.
Purdue Northwest (12-9 overall/2-2 GLIAC) continues its home stand on Sunday, March 25, with a GLIAC doubleheader against Northwood University (Mich.). The first game of the pair is scheduled for a noon CT start at Fifth Third Bank Field at Dowling Park.