Penn State (8-10) had a mixed bag of results over the weekend in Fort Collins, CO. The Nittany Lions lost both games against Colorado State, split with Idaho State, and won its only meeting with Buffalo.
The model of consistency so far this season, pitching, was tested as opponents’ bats lit up the scoreboards during a three-game losing streak. But despite struggles at points this year, the Penn State offense managed to wrap up the weekend recording a season high in hits back-to-back games.
How It Happened
Rebecca Ziegler got the Nittany Lions off to a quick start against Idaho State, launching a lead-off home run to make it 1-0. Senior Marlaina Laubach started in the circle and pitched a complete game, giving up just two runs off four hits. At 3-2 in the top of the sixth, Shelby Miller put the game out of reach for the Bengals with a two-run single to push Penn State to a 5-2 win.
Later on Friday, sophomore pitcher Madison Seifert got the start against Colorado State. The Rams scored two runs off four hits in the first inning and increased their lead to 4-0 in the fifth off a single with the bases loaded. Penn State couldn’t manage to get a run on the board through seven innings and fell 4-0.
The Bengals managed to break down Penn State in their second meeting on Saturday. Idaho State broke out to a 5-0 lead through three innings, but the Nittany Lions fired back in the bottom of the third — tying the game on a grand slam from Delaney Elling. Idaho State, undeterred by the rough inning, reopened the lead in the next two innings with three runs in each. The Bengals went on to win 12-6.
Penn State fell in its third-straight game despite out-hitting Colorado State 12-5 later on Saturday. Junior Jessica Cummings gave up two home runs and was pulled in the third inning. Laubach came on in relief and pitched three scoreless innings, but the Rams found their bats again in the bottom of the sixth, tacking on three runs.
Down 6-2 in the seventh inning, the Nittany Lions loaded the bases with no outs. Tori Dubois knocked in two runs with a single and Polk singled with one out to make it 6-5, but that’s how it would finish as Ziegler and Mollie Sorenson both grounded out to end the game.
Penn State’s bats broke out in the final game on Sunday against Buffalo. The Nittany Lions used 14 hits and four errors from the Bulls to push 14 runs across the board. The combination of Laubach and freshman Madey Smith gave up just one run off two hits in the 14-1 run-rule victory in five innings.
Player Of The Series
Kristina Brackpool | First Base | Senior
Brackpool recorded a hit in each of the five games this weekend — batting .375. She also had three RBIs, including two in the second meeting with Idaho State.
Penn State hopes to get back to .500 when it meets Seattle on Wednesday for a doubleheader at the Redhawks’ home, Logan Field.