Indiana softball fell in a three-game series against Nebraska this past weekend. Indiana again would face defeat after its road loss against Notre Dame this past Wednesday, making its Big Ten record 9-5.
Friday evening the Hoosiers were back at Andy Mohr Field after their previous away game. The first matchup would start off with the Huskers offensively dominating at the top of the first inning with five hits and three runs to add to the board.
Both Cora Bassett and Taylor Minnick would have hits and Sarah Stone and Brianna Copeland walked. The game seemed to be off to a competitive start. It wouldn't be long until things would take a quick turn. Nebraska’s offense continued to move swiftly in the second inning. The team would come out to score four runs, leaving the Hoosiers winded.
That wind would only pick up after the second calling for a rain delay that lasted two hours. The Hoosiers and the Huskers resumed gameplay after the lightning departure at the top of the third inning.
Nebraska didn’t let up, and the game would end at the top of the fifth for a run-rule ending 12-2.
“It’s about getting experience but we are quite a few games in,” Indiana head coach Shonda Stanton said. “So at this point in time we have that evaluated experience, we gotta play like veterans.”
On Saturday, the Hoosiers prepared to play a double-header against Nebraska to finish off the three game series before the rain. Indiana had the hopes of making a comeback starting Macy Montgomery on the mound, but Nebraska would pick up right where it left off, scoring four runs at the top of the first inning.
At the bottom of the first Indiana scored two runs. Freshman Taryn Kern would get on the board and add to her overall Big Ten-leading .417 and 18 homers overall in the season.
The Hoosiers and Huskers both would continue to rely on their high-powered offenses. Indiana took the lead in the fourth but Nebraska shortly closed the gap causing a tie in the fifth. The Huskers scored three unearned runs and added another, making the overall score 8-5 by the bottom of the fifth.
The Hoosiers scored once more, but would fall short, ending the second game with a final of 8-6, Nebraska victorious.
“I thought we made some great plays at times,” Stanton said about Indiana's offense. “But just not enough plays against a team that can swing it.”
With a packed Andy Mohr Field for the second game of Saturday’s double header, the Hoosiers were hoping to turn the series around. Both teams scored right away, ending the bottom of the first 2-1 Nebraska.
Montgomery started the game, pitching into the third inning before Copeland entered in relief. Copeland would go to shut down Nebraska's offense, holding off any more runs and keeping the game close.
In the seventh inning, Nebraska extended its lead with a home run to left, and Indiana wasn’t able to complete the comeback, losing 4-2.
The Nebraska team pushed Indiana to its limits with its quick offense and veteran players.
“When you look at it whether it's a routine ground ball or competing in those situations, if we don’t have a clean defense, they’re gonna hit our defense and we weren't able to do that this weekend and that’s where it hurt us,” Stanton said.
The Hoosiers will now have a week's rest until Friday when they travel to Piscataway, New Jersey for their series against Rutgers.