WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — The Purdue softball team suffered a pair of setbacks to Nebraska, 7-5 and 9-4, on Saturday afternoon at Bittinger Stadium.
Four Boilermakers led Purdue (29-17, 6-8 Big Ten) with three hits and at least one run each, while senior Mallory Baker and freshman Rachel Becker guided the team with two runs apiece.
Game 1 | Nebraska 7, Purdue 5
Nebraska (15-24, 4-8 Big ten ) struck first with a pair of runs in the opening frame on back-to-back RBI singles, before Purdue responded with three runs on three hits in the bottom of the frame. The Boilermakers loaded the bases with a pair of singles and walk, while junior Madison Douglass capitalized with a two-RBI single up the middle. The home squad utilized a fielder's choice to tack on one more run in the frame.
The Boilermakers extended their lead in the third after Douglass and freshman Kasey Wilhoit launched back-to-back solo home runs over the center field wall.
With Purdue leading 5-2, Nebraska battled back with a pair of runs on a double and a single to come within one in the top of the fifth.
The Cornhuskers scratched one across on a Purdue miscue to knot the game 5-5, before breaking through with a double to right field for a 7-5 edge in the top of the sixth.
The Boilermakers threatened with runners on the corners in the bottom of the seventh, but would not be able to find the equalizer.
Senior Kaitlynn Moody (10-7) took the loss in the circle after giving up three runs in one inning pitched.
At the plate the Boilermakers outhit hit the visitors 11-9, but suffered two errors.
Game 2 | Nebraska 9, Purdue 4
Once again the Cornhuskers built a 2-0 advantage with a pair of RBI singles in the second and the third frames.
A three-run third inning for Purdue then pushed the Boilermakers in front 3-2 as senior Lexi Huffman, Wilhoit and sophomore Rachel Krzysko strung together a trio of RBI singles.
In the fourth, Nebraska regained the lead with a three-RBI double down the left field line.
Purdue would reclaim one run on an RBI single from Douglass in the bottom of the fifth, before the Cornhuskers delivered a sixth-inning home run and a pair of RBI doubles in the seventh to collect a 9-4 victory.
Senior Maddie Damon picked up her second loss of the season after giving up three runs on two hits and one walk in one complete inning of work.
The Boilermakers recorded nine hits with Huffman and Baker both going 3-for-4 at the plate.
Purdue will look to bounce back with a non-conference matchup against Notre Dame on Tuesday. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Bittinger Stadium.