LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) – The Boilermaker softball team picked up its first win of the Kim Schuette era and the 2014 season with a 5-4 upset of No. 10 Texas Sunday morning at the Louisiana Classic. Purdue took an early lead and held off the Longhorn offense for the victory.
Sophomore Lilly Fecho went the distance for the Boilers in the circle, striking out six, while Lauren Slatten (1-1) was saddled with the loss for UT after giving up three runs in the opening stanza. Gabby Smith and Holly Kern saw relief action for the Longhorns.
The Boilermakers scored five runs on six hits and got help from eight walks and two hit by pitches in the contest. Senior Tori Chiodo posted two hits in the game, driving in one RBI, and also made the final out of the game with a stellar just-in-time throw down to first base from shallow right field.
The Boilers got on the board early thanks to patience at the plate, taking advantage of four walks, a hit by pitch and an RBI single by senior Tori Chiodo, to take a 3-0 lead. Seniors Andie Varsho and Maia Monchek walked and freshman Katy McJunkin was hit by a pitch to fill the bases with two outs. Senior Lindsey Rains drew a full count walk to push across the first run. Chiodo plated the second slipping a single through the left side. Sophomore Paris Andrew made it 3-0, picking up a free pass that drove in McJunkin.
The Boilermaker softball team then went toe-to-toe with No. 13 Louisiana-Lafayette and played the Ragin’ Cajuns to a 7-7 draw in a game that had to be called after eight innings due to travel arrangements.
The game was a back-and-forth affair. ULL went up 2-0 and Purdue tied it up. The Cajuns took a 3-2 lead, but the Boilers scored three runs in the sixth to go ahead 5-3. Louisiana-Lafayette scored four runs in the seventh to take a 7-5 edge, but Purdue knotted it up with two runs in the bottom of the stanza. Both teams had scoring chances in the eighth, but could not convert.
Purdue scored its seven runs on 13 hits and two errors, while ULL managed its seven runs on eight hits and four Boilermaker miscues. Junior Ashley Burkhardt led the Boiler bats with a 3-for-4 effort, two RBI and two runs scored. Senior Lindsey Rains and freshman Kristen Hoppman added two hits apiece. Nine Boilersmakers contributed hits in the game.
Three pitchers saw time in the circle for Purdue. Junior Alex Whittemore tossed two and two thirds innings, striking out one. Senior Lauren Grant threw three and two thirds innings of relief, striking out three, and sophomore Lilly Fecho finished the contest, going one and two thirds innings. The Ragin’ Cajuns also utilized three pitchers in the contest, compiling six strikeouts.
Burkhardt and senior Maia Monchek were named to the Louisiana Classic all-tournament team for their efforts on the weekend.