Nittany Lions Pick Up Two Big Ten Victories
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The Penn State University softball team (25-10, 2-2 Big Ten) evened out its Big Ten record with a pair of victories over Indiana University (7-23, 0-4) today (March 30). In the first game the Nittany Lions defeated the Hoosiers 7-1 before using a six-run first inning in the second game to roll to a 6-1 victory.
The Nittany Lions had to wait over three hours in the pouring rain to get their doubleheader under way and make their Big Ten Network debut in front of a national audience. The players would not disappoint as they hit on all cylinders including dominate performances on the mound as well as in the batters box.
In game one, senior Ashley Esparza (San Pedro, Calif./San Pedro) pitched a complete game while striking out seven and allowing just three hits. She also went 2-for-4 at the plate with an RBI. Senior Hollee Haines (Riverside, Calif./Martin Luther King) returned to form as she went 2-for-3 with a two-run homerun. The final Nittany Lion with two hits was junior Danielle Kinley (Carlsbad, Calif./Carlsbad) who went 2-for-4 with a run scored. In total the Nittany Lion bats exploded for nine hits and seven runs.
The bats got started early in game two as the Nittany Lions recorded six runs on four hits in the first inning. The six runs would be all PSU needed as the team went on to win 6-1. Kinley continued her outstanding day as she went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored. Junior Sam Hovanec (Pittsburgh, Pa./Baldwin) went 1-for-3 with two RBI while classmate Shana Madura (Slate Hill, N.Y./Minisink Valley) went 1-for-3 with a three RBI double.
Redshirt freshman Jackie Hill (San Jose, Calif./Leigh) took the mound holding the Hoosiers hitless through 5.2 innings. She went the complete game striking out three while allowing just three hits.
The Nittany Lions will next be in action this Friday and Saturday, April 4 and 5 at 6 p.m. as they host Illinois for a two-game series.