WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) – The Boilermaker softball team advanced to the quarterfinals of the Big Ten Tournament with a 4-2 come-from-behind win over Indiana on Thursday morning.
Sophomore Lilly Fecho (21-15) tossed five strikeouts in the complete-game victory, while the Hoosiers threw three pitchers in the loss. Lora Olson (8-18) was saddled with the loss after pitching the first two and two thirds innings. Meaghan Murphy and Brooke Boetjer also saw time in the circle.
The Boilermakers scored their four runs on 11 hits, including a 3-for-3 effort by junior Ashley Burkhardt and a two-hit effort by senior Andie Varsho. Eight of the Boiler starters tallied a hit and the ninth laid down a sacrifice bunt.
Bre Saucedo lifted a home run to right field to start the game for the Hoosiers.
The Boilermakers put two runners on in the bottom of the first with one-out singles by senior Tori Chiodo and Burkhardt, but could not cash in on the RBI chance.
Indiana made it 2-0 as CaraMia Tsirigos lifted a leadoff home run in the second.
Senior Lindsey Rains laid down a perfect bunt single with one out in the bottom of the inning. A fielder’s choice and a ground out kept the Boilers from capitalizing.
The Boilers tied it up in the third as Burkhardt smashed a two-run shot over the right field fence. The two-out long ball plated Varsho, who was on second after a one-out double to deep left. Senior Danielle Fletcher kept the hit parade rolling with a double off the center field wall, prompting a Hoosier pitching change. An illegal pitch from Meaghan Murphy moved Fletcher to third, but a fly out left the score tied at 2-2.
Both teams put a runner on in the fourth, but neither could score. Senior Maia Monchek reached for the Boilers with a one-out single.
Purdue scored two big runs on three hits and an error in the fifth to take the lead. The Boilermakers loaded the bases on a double by Varsho, single by Burkhardt and an intentional walk to Fletcher. Freshman Katy McJunkin sent an RBI single into left field to put Purdue on top. A throwing error on a fielder’s choice play allowed the second score.
Sophomore Paris Andrew singled in the sixth to give Purdue its final hit, but a double play capped the inning.
The Hoosiers got a pair of singles to start the seventh and sacrificed them into scoring position. Fecho issued a pair of strikeouts to wrap up the game and send the Boilers to the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals.
The quarterfinal game is at noon ET on Friday, live on the Big Ten Network.