Softball beats Badgers


Sophomore outfielder Jessica Rio slides into home plate against Eastern Michigan April 28. The Huskies beat the Eagles in three games. 

By Krystal Ward

Softball won its seventh consecutive game when it defeated the University of Wisconsin Badgers from the Big Ten Conference Tuesday in Madison, Wisconsin.

Key hits in the seventh inning and a solid performance from sophomore pitcher Alex Frenz propelled the Huskies (28-18, 13-8 Mid-American Conference) past the Badgers (29-14, 8-11 Big Ten), 6-4.

“That was a gutsy pitching performance by Alex working out of some jams,” said Head Coach Christina Sutcliffe. “Our offense did a great job being aggressive on the bases and capitalizing on clutch hits. Jordyn [Bowen] leading off the seventh was the difference maker for us pulling through.”

Senior first baseman Kayti Grable doubled to left center field to score sophomore outfielder Jessica Rio and gave the Huskies a 4-3 lead in the top of the seventh inning.

Alaynie Woollard, junior catcher and infielder, singled to score Bekah Harnish, junior catcher and infielder, and sophomore infielder Dominique Greeno to tack on two more runs for the Huskies.

Junior infielder Kelsey Jenkins added one more run for the Badgers when she singled home sophomore outfielder Kelly Welsh in the bottom of the seventh inning, but NIU held them off the rest of the game.

Frenz (12-6) pitched a complete game and gave up four earned runs on 12 hits, with four walks and one strikeout.

Rio and Harnish both went 2-for-4 with a run scored.

Sophomore outfielder Katie Lamich went 3-for-4 with one RBI.

Sophomore utilityman Abby Howlett, who was named MAC Player of the Week, went 1-for-4 with one RBI and a run scored.

NIU first made it on the board when Lamich reached base on an error by Badgers infielder Stephanie Lombardo, scoring senior middle infielder Kali Kossakowski in the fourth inning.

Howlett doubled to center field to score Woollard and move Lamich up to second base.

Sophomore infielder Sam Schmidt singled up the middle to score Howlett and give NIU a 3-0 lead.

The Huskies play their final regular season games this weekend as they take on the University of Toledo in a three-game series. The first game is scheduled for 3 p.m. Friday at Mary M. Bell Field.