Badgers Take Two from Nittany Lions
April 21, 2012
MADISON, Wis. - The Penn State softball team couldn't find its stride offensively on Saturday, falling 4-1 and 8-0 to Wisconsin at Goodman Diamond. Cassidy Bell (Bakersfield, Calif.) accounted for the lone Nittany Lion run with her seventh home run of the year in the opener. PSU falls to 13-25 overall with a 5-9 Big Ten record, while Wisconsin improves to 26-13, 10-4 in the Big Ten.
The Badgers put three on the board in the first beginning with a bases-loaded walk by Shannel Blackshear. Marissa Mersch's grounder to third couldn't be handled, scoring another run before Michelle Mueller lofted a sacrifice fly to rightfield for a 3-0 lead.
Penn State couldn't match the run production despite putting runners on base in every inning but one, ultimately stranding eight Nittany Lions. The best scoring opportunity of the day came in the fifth down 4-0. Renwick had runners on first and second with only one out, but her lined shot was snagged by Blackshear, who dropped the ball, tossed to third for the first out then to first for the inning-ending double play.
Bell hit her seventh home run of the season in the top of the seventh, moving into a tie for seventh on the PSU all-time charts with 15. She's tied with Meghan Murphy (2000-03), Val Serpico (1993-96) and Nan Sichler (1985-88). Bell leads the Big Ten in home runs during conference play.
Marissa Diescher (Livingston Manor, N.Y.) took the loss going 1.1 innings, while Jordan Wheatley (Troy, Mich.) went 4.2 innings allowing two hits, two walks and one unearned run. UW's Cassandra Darrah earned the victory allowing one run, eight hits and walked none, while striking out five to capture Wisconsin's first victory over PSU since 2008.
Penn State mustered just two hits, a single by Renwick in the fourth and a double by Sovereign in the fifth, as the Lions struggled against Amanda Najdek. The UW hurler went five innings of two-hit ball, improving to 5-1 as she struck out two batters and walked none.
Wisconsin scored one in the third before the six-run onslaught in the fourth. The Badgers ended the game with two outs in the fifth on a liner to the gap by Massei. Wheatley fell to 1-3 as she allowed the first seven runs on 10 hits.
The Badgers broke Penn State's stranglehold on the all-time series by sweeping the doubleheader. Wisconsin won back-to-back games for the first time since 2001-02 and swept a doubleheader for the first time since 1997. Penn State leads the all-time series 27-14.
The two teams will return to Goodman Diamond for a 1:00 p.m. ET matchup, both games will have GameTracker coverage and live streaming on BTN.com.