Softball picks up a win at MAC-leader Central Michigan

The Huskies now have a 4-10 MAC record


Wes Sanderson

Senior outfielder Kara Apato assumes her batting stance during a game against Ball State University April 6 in DeKalb.

By Jordan Radloff

DeKALBThe NIU softball team picked up one win in a weekend series against Mid-American Conference leader Central Michigan University in Mount Pleasant, Michigan.

Saturday: CMU 4, NIU 0

The Huskies were swept in their first game of the series on Saturday, losing 4-0 to CMU. The game was scoreless through three innings until CMU designated-hitter Caitlyn Britton hit a solo home run in the fourth inning. CMU followed up with a three-run rally in the sixth inning.

NIU had five hits in the game from five different hitters, compared to the 10 from the home team. 

Sunday, game one: NIU 7, CMU 3

NIU started off the second day with a win in the first game of the doubleheader Sunday. The Huskies took a 3-2 lead with a three-run rally in the third inning. CMU infielder Shannon Stein made it a tie ball game in the bottom of the third with a solo home run. NIU was able to regain the lead again and keep it to the end of the game after adding four runs in the fifth inning for a 7-3 final score.

Junior infielder Sam Mallinder led the Huskies with three hits, including two doubles, and senior infielder Bianca Barone had the most runs-batted-in with three in the game.

Sunday, game two: CMU 12, NIU 4

CMU completed a comeback attempt in the second game of the doubleheader Sunday to split the bill for the day and end the series with two wins over the Huskies.

NIU held a 4-0 lead going into the fifth inning. CMU made it a close game with a three-run homer from Stein in the bottom of the fifth, and then struck back in the next inning with nine more runs to bring the score to 12-4, forcing the eight-run mercy rule to end the game.

“Our defense also did a really nice job today,” head coach Christina Sutcliffe said in an NIU Athletics news release. “Even in the second game before things got out of hand there were a couple of really close plays that could have gone either way and unfortunately they didn’t go our way, but that’s part of the game.”

Looking ahead:

The Huskies brough their overall record to 10-19 and MAC record to 4-10 following the series against Central Michigan.

NIU softball will now prepare for a midweek single-game matchup at Valparaiso University 3 p.m. Wednesday in Valparaiso, Indiana.

The Huskies will return home to face MAC opponent Kent State University next weekend, starting with a game at 3 p.m. Friday in DeKalb.