Courtney Wyche stared down Emily Maddock from the pitcher’s circle. The game remained deadlocked with no score, leaving all the focus on the mound.

Maddock had struck out only one time in thirty games entering Friday. But against Wyche, she struggled. The pitch soared to the plate and Maddock reached but missed. In just three at-bats, Maddock had struck out more than she had all season.

In a pitcher’s duel, Wyche punched out a career-high 19 batters and played a crucial role in the circle. The graduate pitcher threw a two-hit shutout, leaving the Nittany Lions without an answer.

While neither team found their footing at the plate, Jaeda McFarland’s two-run double in the ninth inning broke the stalemate and sealed the game for the Terps, who claimed a 2-0 win in extra innings.

No. 22 Penn State (24-7, 3-1 Big Ten) entered the matchup with a more favorable record than Maryland (16-15, 3-1 Big Ten). Friday marked the Terps’ fifth-ranked matchup of the season — they entered the weekend with a 1-3 record against ranked opponents.

[Maryland softball’s quality at-bats led to an offensive explosion against Minnesota]

Maryland opened its Big Ten slate last weekend against Minnesota. Coach Lauren Karn’s team claimed two victories in three offense-heavy battles. The Terps scored at least six runs in each contest, including a 12-run outburst on Sunday to claim the series victory.

Karn tossed the ball to Maryland’s ace to open up the weekend, Courtney Wyche. The graduate pitcher shut down the Nittany Lions, throwing all nine innings while allowing just five baserunners.

Maryland’s offense came out blazing with two hits in two at-bats from Megan Mikami and Diamond Williams. But the two singles were not enough to move the baserunners and get a run home in the top of the first. From there, the game turned stagnant and the pitchers took control.

Wyche battled with freshman hurler Bridget Nemeth. Last week’s Big Ten Freshman of the Week, who held a 1.07 ERA in seventeen appearances entering the day, continued the remarkable start to her collegiate career. Nemeth went blow-for-blow with Maryland’s veteran ace, going eight innings without allowing a run.

While a freshman led the Nittany Lions, Maryland turned to its veteran players. Mikami and Williams, a senior and graduate student respectively, recorded seven of the Terps’ 11 total hits.

[Maryland softball’s pitching implodes in 15-6 loss to Minnesota]

Michaela Jones capitalized on a Penn State error to put a runner in scoring position for the first time since the first inning. But Nemeth struck out Sydney Lewis to end the top of the sixth before Maryland could get a runner home.

Wyche continued to impress, allowing her team to sit back on defense with little to no action throughout the game. In the fifth inning, she reached 11 strikeouts and later surpassed her season-high of 12 against Minnesota last weekend. She finished out the contest with 94 strikes on 147 pitches.

The stalemate continued, leading the game to extra innings. Maryland exploded in the top of the eighth. A single by Michaela Jones, Williams, and McFarland loaded the bases but a pop-up by Sammi Woods ended the inning before the Terps could put one on the board.

The Terps were finally able to finish in the ninth. Madison Runyan singled to shortstop to start the frame. A bunt by Delaney Reefe and a single by Megan Mikami moved Runayn to third. McFarland then slammed the ball to left-center, hitting the back fence. Runyan ran home with Mikami not far behind her.

The hit by McFarland ended the standstill and put two on the board for Maryland in the ninth as it came out on top in the first game of the weekend series.