With bases loaded and two outs in the first inning, Indiana pulled pitcher Emily Goodin early in an attempt to minimize the damage in the first of two games against Maryland softball Saturday.
But the ploy to stop the Terps from building on their 1-0 lead failed. Natalie Foor took over in the circle, and Maryland first baseman Taylor Wilson lashed a two-run single into left-center field, plating infielders Sammie Stefan and Bailey Boyd.
After falling 8-0 in Friday’s five-inning series opener, early damage from Maryland’s bats in the second game provided just enough run support for Victoria Galvan and Sami Main to hold off the Hoosiers in a 4-3 win.
But in the nightcap Saturday, order was once more restored, as Indiana benefitted from three errors, an inconsistent Terps pitching staff and another stellar start from pitcher Tara Trainer to capture the rubber match in five innings, 10-1.
To open Saturday’s first game, center fielder JoJo McRae walked and advanced to second on right fielder Amanda Brashear’s sacrifice bunt. She was then driven in on a Stefan single up the middle. When Boyd notched a base knock and catcher Gracie Voulgaris walked, Indiana opted to swap out pitchers to stanch the bleeding.
Wilson cashed in with her two-run single, establishing a 3-0 lead that the Hoosiers would chip away at but not overcome.
After two quick outs in the bottom half of the frame, Galvan gave up a single and hit the next batter. Third baseman Katie Lacefield punished the mistake with an RBI single. Stefan’s leadoff homer in the third, though, re-established a three-run lead.
While Galvan escaped the first with just one run surrendered, the Hoosiers made her pay for control problems in the fourth. Galvan walked two Hoosiers and uncorked two wild pitches — one scored pinch runner Paige Chitwood from third — before pinch hitter Brittany Ford’s RBI single drew Indiana within one.
Main, however, earned her second save this season, working around trouble in the sixth and seventh to secure a 4-3 win.
Maryland’s pitching staff wouldn’t find the same success in game two, and its defense and offense left little room for error.
Wilson’s error at first allowed Indiana center fielder Taylor Lambert to leadoff the game on base, and shortstop Grayson Radcliffe’s two-run home run two batters later put the Hoosiers ahead to set the tone for the eventual rout.
Pitcher Sydney Golden lasted 2 ⅓ innings, allowing four hits, two walks and five runs — only two were earned — as she was chased following two walks in the third. Ford subsequently loaded the bases with a single off Main. An error from Stefan brought one run home, and a fielder’s choice drove in the second to take a 5-0 lead.
The wheels fell off in the fourth, with Indiana scoring five runs and threatening to cut the game short. Designated player Maddie Westmorland’s RBI single knocked in one, and Radcliffe scampered home on Main’s wild pitch. Then, first baseman Annika Baez’s two-run double knocked Main out of the contest, having allowed four hits, five runs and two walks in one-plus innings.
Galvan entered, but the Terps’ woes remained. The redshirt freshman unleashed a wild pitch that scored a run in a game and series that had long been decided, giving right fielder Shelby Younkin’s sacrifice fly in the fifth little meaning on a scoreboard so heavily lopsided and closing out the series with another five-inning defeat.