Evanston, Ill. — Laura Barrow hit two home runs and Kaylan Jablonski had one to help the Nebraska softball team (25-10, 3-1 Big Ten) defeat Big Ten foe Northwestern (20-11, 3-3 Big Ten) on Friday afternoon by a score of 6-2.
Barrow finished 3-for-4, with two runs and three RBIs, while Jablonski went 1-for-3 with one run and two RBIs. Alyvia Simmons also had an impressive day at the plate, going 3-for-4 with one run, one RBI and two doubles. The trio combined for all of Nebraska’s seven hits.
Olivia Ferrell improved to 7-3 on the season. She pitched 4.0 innings, gave up one run on two hits. She also had two walks and two strikeouts. Jablonski picked up her fifth save of the season and now ranks third in the senior record books. She pitched 3.0 innings, gave up one run on two hits. She also had one strikeout.
Northwestern’s Morgan Newport (10-4) only lasted 0.1 innings. She gave up three runs on two hits and also had one walk.
Nebraska sent all nine batters to the plate in the first inning and took a quick 3-0 lead. Barrow hit a solo homer to give Nebraska a 1-0 lead. Edwards drew a walk and Jablonski hit another homer to give the Huskers two more runs. A hit batter and two walks loaded the bases for the Huskers with two outs, but Northwestern retired the next batter to leave three on base.
The Wildcats put a runner in scoring position with no outs after a walk and a stolen base. A hit batter put two on with one outs, but the Husker defense came in clutch, getting out of the inning with a double play.
In the second, two hit batters and a walk loaded the bases with two outs for the Huskers, but a strikeout left three runners stranded for the second straight inning.
Northwestern got two runners in scoring position with a one-out walk and a double. A fielder’s choice that kept a runner from scoring, but also didn’t get a runner out. With the bases loaded, one run scored on a sacrifice fly.
Back-to-back walks in the top of the third set up a good offensive opportunity for Nebraska, but Northwestern made a great defensive play and turned a bunt attempt into a double play. The ‘Cats got the lead runner out at third and the runner out at first. With a runner on second and two outs, Simmons doubled to right center to score another run for Nebraska and extend the Husker lead to 4-1.
In the fifth, Simmons got a leadoff double and Barrow hit her second homer of the day to give Nebraska a 6-1 lead.
In the top of the seventh, the Wildcats loaded the bases with no outs after a pair of singles and a fielder’s choice that didn’t get a runner out. A sacrifice fly cut the Husker lead to 6-2, but the Huskers retired the next two batters to end the game.
The Huskers and the Wildcats will continue the series on Saturday at 1 p.m.