Wallace pitches Huskers past Hawkeyes
LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) -Junior right-hander Courtney Wallace tossed her second straight shutout to lead the Nebraska softball team to a 4-0 win over Iowa Saturday at Bob Pearl Field in Iowa City.
Wallace (10-7) fired a four-hitter while tossing the first 7.0-inning shutout of her career. With the win, Wallace stretched her streak to 14.2 consecutive scoreless innings.
Wallace also contributed offensively, doubling and scoring the first game’s run. But it was senior Cam Ybarra who paced the Husker offense. Ybarra finished 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI. Freshman Abbie Squier and junior Anni Raley each drove in a run as well. Overall, seven of Nebraska’s nine starters produced a hit.
With the win, Nebraska improved to 21-17 and moved back into a fifth-place tie in the Big Ten standings with Iowa (21-17). Lauren Shaw (7-4) took the loss, allowing four runs (two earned) in a complete-game effort.
In the top of the first inning, Ybarra doubled with two outs but was stranded at second base. Wallace then pitched herself out of a jam in the bottom of the frame. A walk, a hit batter and a passed ball put Hawkeyes on second and third with no outs. But a lineout to Ybarra at second base and an unassisted double play by junior first baseman Payton Huscroft ended the threat.
Nebraska stranded a pair of runners in the third inning before scoring three times in the top of the fourth. Wallace led off the fourth with a double and was at third base with two outs. Squier brought Wallace home with an RBI single for the game’s first run. An error extended the inning and put runners on first and second for Raley, who delivered an RBI single up the middle to score Squier. Another error allowed Huscroft to score and give Nebraska a 3-0 lead.
In the top of the fifth, Ybarra led off with a single before Wallace reached on another error. But with runners on first and second and no outs, the next three batters were retired.
Iowa picked up its second hit of the game with a one-out double in the bottom of the fifth. An error then put runners at first and second but sophomore Brooke Andrews turned an inning-ending double play to preserve the three-run lead.
In the top of the sixth inning, Huscroft led off with a single and freshman Billie Andrews reached on a one-out single to put Huskers on first and second. After Iowa recorded the second out, Ybarra lined a two-out RBI single to right that scored Billie Andrews to stretch the Husker lead to 4-0.
Iowa got a one-out single in the bottom of the sixth before Nebraska turned its third inning-ending double play of the game.
The Hawkeyes recorded a two-out single in the bottom of the seventh, before Wallace wrapped up the shutout with a ground out.
Due to inclement weather, the second game of the doubleheader was postponed until Sunday. Nebraska and Iowa will now play a doubleheader on Sunday beginning at Noon.
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