WICHITA, Kansas – The University of Northern Iowa softball team dropped a doubleheader this afternoon to the Wichita State University Shockers.
UNI (21-12 overall, 8-5 MVC) plated four runs late in game one but came up short, 9-4.UNI was held to three hits in game two and Wichita State (24-17, 11-3 MVC) claimed the nightcap, 8-0.
A five-run third inning from Wichita State had the Panthers playing from behind early in game one. Struggling to find a rhythm at the plate throughout the game, the Panthers climbed back into the contest late but fell short.
Jordyn Brunssen was the first Panther to score in the fifth inning as a pinch runner. Samantha Olson collected just the second hit of the game with two outs advancing Brunssen to second. The two would advance on a double steal to put runners at second and third. A costly throwing error from Wichita State allowed Brunssen to score making it a four-run game, 5-1. Caitlin Wnek added to the scoring in the sixth with a solo home run to left centerfield narrowing the deficit to 5-2.
The Shockers piled on the offense in the bottom of the sixth with a four-run inning to extend their lead to 9-2. The Panthers rallied in the seventh but could not close the gap. Chelsea Ross led off the seventh by drawing a walk. Michaela Martin pinch ran for Ross. A double from Micalla Rettinger put the two in scoring position. A defensive error by the Shockers allowed both Martin and Rettinger to score..
Jamie Fisher started the game and was charged with the loss. Fisher (13-8) pitched a complete game and gave up nine runs and 10 hits to the Shockers. Fisher struck out four.
UNI's offensive struggles continued in game two as the Panthers were limited to three hits. Julia Hunter, Rikki Alcaraz and Chelsea Ross each collected hits in the contest but all three were left stranded at first.
The Shocker offense picked up right where it left off in game one scoring in all but the second inning.
Chelsea Ross took the loss in the circle for the Panthers. Ross pitched five innings and allowed seven hits and five earned runs. Ross fanned six Shockers batters before leaving the game. Alyssa Buchanan closed out the contest in the circle for the Panthers.
UNI will take the field again tomorrow at Noon at Wilkins Stadium wrapping up the three-game series against the Shockers.