The Daily Illini

Pitching, home runs carry softball to win over IUPUI


The sun finally came out over Eichelberger Field, and with it came another Illinois Softball win.

“It’s finally softball weather,” senior Leigh Farina said. “It actually makes you want to come out and play and not stand in the field miserable because you’re so cold.”

The Illini got three perfect innings from Taylor Edwards, and relief pitchers Emily Oestreich and Danielle Brochu allowed two hits the rest of the way, cruising to a 7-2 victory over IUPUI.

“We wanted to get a couple kids some innings,” head coach Tyra Perry said. “I thought they did a great job.”

Offensively, Carly Thomas hit two home runs, Bella Loya added another, and Stephanie Abello scored on errors in the second and sixth inning for the Illini’s seven runs.

“They were basically throwing the same pitch over and over again and not changing much,” shortstop Leigh Farina said. “Our approach was pretty straightforward. Crowd the box if you’re a lefty, back off if you’re a righty and swing away.”

It wasn’t all easy for the Illini. After they went up 6-0 in the third, the offense began to slow down.

“I think we stopped swinging,” Perry said. “You have to swing your bat and be aggressive. I think we started out that way, then we kind of got away from that.”

When Illinois stopped scoring, Indiana attempted to claw their way back, scoring an unearned run, then bringing in another after Kiana Sherlund couldn’t hold onto a line drive at the wall.

Sherlund stayed down for a moment before getting up and finishing the game in centerfield

“I didn’t realize I was so close to the fence,” Sherlund said. “Rowan [McGuire] was there, and she was literally like, ‘Don’t even get up, I’ve got it I’ve got it!’ and I said, ‘Good, I can’t even see straight right now.’”

With the win, the Illini now have won nine of their last ten, with their last losing streak coming in a doubleheader loss at Nebraska on April 12.

Of those nine wins, five came against Big Ten teams, with a chance to push that number higher in an upcoming series against Nebraska. Their record now stands at 33-16.

After Nebraska comes the postseason, and Perry is happy with the way her team is playing this late in the year and feels they are very close to where she wants them.

“We are just a couple cleanup things on defense, a couple pitches away, and on offense being a little more aggressive,” Perry said.

[email protected]

Leave a Comment