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Baton Rouge, La. • Tiger Park
BATON ROUGE, La.; Feb. 16, 2014 - The Penn State softball team opened up its second weekend of play with a split effort, defeating George Washington, 9-1, in five innings before falling to Northwestern, 11-1, in five. Freshman pitcher Marlaina Laubach (Northampton, Pa.) earned her third win of the season against the Colonials to remain perfect, allowing just one run and one walk in seven innings.
PENN STATE 9, GEORGE WASHINGTON 1 (5)
The Nittany Lions (4-2) picked up where they left off last weekend against George Washington (0-10), notching six runs in the first two innings. Senior Kasie Hatfield (Tampa, Fla.) sent a two-RBI double to right center in the first to drive in Alyssa Sovereign (La Canada, Calif.) and Reina Furuya (Waipahu, Hawaii) for the first two runs of the game.
Sophomore Karlie Habitz (Newhall, Calif.) extended the Lions' lead to 3-0 in the second, pushing a single up the middle to bring in freshman Shelby Miller (Sugar Land, Texas). Macy Jones (Ashburn, Va.), who went a perfect 3-for-3 at the plate, notched a two-RBI single to send Habitz and Sovereign home, putting the score at 5-0. Freshman Kristina Brackpool (Valencia, Calif.) brought in the final tally of the inning, sending in Hatfield with a single to the right side.
Each team went scoreless in the third before Penn State added another run in the fourth. Lexi Knief (Ramsey, N.J.) brought Jones in after grounding out to GW's Victoria Valos, putting the Nittany Lions up 7-0.
The Colonials finally got on the board in the top of the fifth. Sophomore Meghan Rico singled up the middle to drive in Madi Myers-Cook and bring the count to 7-1.
Penn State registered two runs in the bottom of the fifth to end the game early. Hatfield tallied a single to bring freshman Mary Ward (Greencastle, Pa.) across the plate and Miller was walked with the bases loaded to send in Maegan Tupinio (Wahiawa, Hawaii), putting the final score at 9-1.
NORTHWESTERN 11, PENN STATE 1 (5)
The Blue and White (4-3) struggled to find their stride against the Wildcats (7-2), putting just one run on the board while allowing 11 runs. The Wildcats started out hot, posting six runs in the first inning alone.
An Andrea DiPrima double to center brought in Mari Majam and Emily Allard for the first two runs of the game and Marisa Bast scored on a wild pitch to put the count at 3-0. Andrea Filler sent a double to left field, driving in DiPrima and Julia Kuhn hit a two-RBI single to pitcher Marissa Diescher (Livingston Manor, N.Y.), bringing Fuller and Anna Edwards across the plate before the inning was over.
Penn State's lone run of the contest came in the bottom of the first. Habitz earned her 12th RBI of the season on a single to left center that drove in Knief and cut the deficit to 6-1.
The Lions were unable to keep the Wildcats at bay, however, as NU added four additional runs in the second. Brianna LeBeau sent punched a single up the middle to send in DiPrima and Edwards scored next on a wild pitch. Kuhn tacked on another two RBIs with a homerun over left field, bringing LeBeau across the plate.
NU added its final tally in the third inning. Andrea Filler reached on a fielder's choice, driving in Majam and bringing the count to 11-1.
Laubach entered the circle for Christy Von Pusch (Bryn Mawr, Pa.) in the fourth inning and kept Northwestern off the board for the remainder of the game but the Lions' offense could not rebound as PSU fell 11-1.
Penn State returns to action on Monday, matching up against No. 21 LSU in a doubleheader. First pitch is set for 5 p.m. (ET) at Tiger Park.