Entering the Terrapins softball team’s Friday night matchup against Nebraska, coach Julie Wright knew her pitchers had to execute in the pitching circle to pull of an upset.

The Cornhuskers posses a potent offense ranked second in slugging percentage, home runs and RBIs in the Big Ten. Against pitchers Madison Martin and Brenna Nation, however, they were limited to four runs in a 7-4 Terps win.

Martin, who leads the Terps (8-23, 1-3 Big Ten) with a 2.96 ERA, pitched five innings, allowing three runs and striking out four. Martin relied on offspeed pitches to keep the Cornhuskers off-balance and she said her curve ball and changeup were particularly effective.

In addition to Martin’s performance in the pitching circle, the Terps relied on a high-energy playing style to end their eight-game losing skid.

Before the season, Wright asked her players to play aggressively in all areas, and she finally saw that on display against the Cornhuskers.

“This was the first time we’ve done it in a while,” she said.

But the coach was the one to set the energetic tone in the first inning. When catcher Kristina Dillard threw out Cornhuskers outfielder Kiki Stokes at second base in the first inning, the coach turned to the crowd behind the Terps dugout, threw her arms in the air and shouted, “Let’s go.”

Outfielder Destiney Henderson displayed that same energy on the bases in the third, darting home on an infield ground ball to beat the Cornhuskers’ throw to the plate. On the next at-bat, infielder Skylynne Ellazar ripped an RBI double to left field to give the Terps a 2-1 lead.

A two-out rally extended the advantage in the fourth. Ellazar hit an RBI single that scored outfielder Kylie Datil from second on another close play at the plate. The middle of the order followed with three more two-out hits, and when the inning was over, the Terps were ahead 7-1.

Calta said the five-run inning was “so exciting because what we’ve been talking about this entire season was being able to string together hits.”

Calta and Ellazar, the Terps’ No. 1 and No. 2 hitters, went a combined 5-for-8 with three RBIs to carry the offense.

The Cornhuskers (20-12, 1-3) responded to the Terps’ fourth inning outburst with two runs in the fifth and knocked Martin out of the game in the sixth.

But in relief, Nation, who has struggled in recent weeks, pitched a scoreless sixth frame and gave up one run in the seventh to close out the win.

“Brenna came in … with a different look in her eye and pounded the zone,” Wright said. “It was really great to see her do that and to know that we have that in her.”