Nittany Lions Take Game 1 of Saturday Doubleheader vs. Rutgers, Win Second Straight

Story posted April 10, 2021 in Sports, CommRadio by Jeremy Ganes

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State won the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader and its second of the series against Rutgers 4-2, thanks to some strong pitching from starter Bailey Parshall.

Despite a shaky stretch in the seventh inning in which Parshall allowed back-to-back singles by Hailey Hoklotubbe and Megan Herka, she settled in and responded by striking out Payton Lincavage and inducing a groundout by Gabrielle Callaway to seal the victory.

Parshall’s final line was a complete seven innings pitched, seven hits allowed, two runs (one earned), no walks and three strikeouts.

Opposing pitcher Ashley Hitchcock struggled with her command, walking five in addition to allowing three hits and three earned runs, though she did manage to strikeout four batters. Izzy Berouty pitched in relief of Hitchcock and was solid, allowing one unearned run on one hit and one walk with two strikeouts.

Penn State got on the scoreboard first, as catcher Ally Kurland smacked a home run over the left-center-field wall to take a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning. The blast came with two outs and Michelle Leone on base.

The Scarlet Knights quickly answered with some scoring of their own. Parshall made an error on a throw to first base on Taylor Lane’s bunt in the top of the third inning, then Lincavage stepped up to the plate and ripped a double into deep left field, scoring Lane all the way from first.

Penn State had a big opportunity on offense in the bottom of the third, but a curious base-running decision cost the Nittany Lions a chance for a huge inning. Melina Livingston led the inning off with a walk and later stole second and third base. Maggie Finnegan then walked to get to first, then Penn State took a big risk that didn’t pay off, sending both baserunners to steal home and second, respectively. Rutgers was ready for the move and had both players in a rundown, and eventually Livingston was thrown out trying to slide into home. The play helped stall a potentially game-altering inning for Penn State.

The Nittany Lions made up for their base-running mistake in the third inning by coming back in the fourth with an additional run. Kurland crushed her second home run of the game over the right-field wall with two outs in the inning, stretching the Penn State lead to 3-1.

The game became quite the back-and-forth affair as Callaway stepped to the plate with Hoklotubbe standing at second, poking a single into center field to score Hoklotubbe and pull the Scarlet Knights back within 3-2 in the bottom of the fourth.

Penn State kept answering whenever Rutgers pulled closer, however. In the bottom of the fifth inning, Penn State loaded the bases against pitcher Hitchcock. Then Leone hit a ground ball to the second baseman Lane, who mishandled it for a fielding error, allowing Livingston to come home and score.

CommRadio will have live coverage of the second game of the doubleheader, which will start 30 minutes after the conclusion of Game 1.

 

Jeremy Ganes is a senior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email jlg6097@psu.edu.