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Spartans Fall to Northwestern In B1G Semifinals

May 12, 2018

Box Score | PDF Box: Northwestern 11, MSU Get Acrobat Reader





SPARTAN SYNOPSIS

Michigan State's 2018 season came to an end with a 11-0 loss (five innings) to Northwestern in the semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament in Madison, Wis. Morgan Newport tossed a five-inning no-hitter, the first of her career and the second all-time in Big Ten Tournament history.

The Spartans (26-26) lost for just the second time in their final 12 games, but were blitzed by the potent offense of Northwestern, which scored two runs in the first and added eight in the second inning as MSU went through three pitchers in the frame. The game was delayed by two and a half hours due to weather issues, starting at 5:50 pm ET.

McKenna Gregory went 3.1 innings in relief, scattering four hits and striking out one and allowing one earned run. Kristina Zalewski (15-11) was the starter and lasted 1.1 inningss before being drilled in the leg with a comebacker, but allowed five runs (four earned) and striking out two. Bridgette Rainey allowed four hits and five runs before making way for Gregory with two out in the second.

Sabrina Rabin went 3-for-4 for the Wildcats while Sammy Nettling was 1-for-2 with four RBI.

The Spartans lose six seniors to graduation: in addition to senior pitchers Kristina Zalewski and Bridgette Rainey, MSU also graduates two of its top three hitters in Lea Foerster and McKenzie Long, and catchers Lindsey Besson and Jordan Davis.


QUOTABLE

"Credit has to go to Northwestern - they jumped on us in the first and second, and their pitcher never allowed us to get going at the plate. We got behind too early with a 10-0 hole before our second chance to see thier pitcher and just never recovered.

This is doubly difficult because this is a very special group of seniors who played their final game today. These six student-athletes really made a difference in our program. This was certainly not the way they wanted to go out. Tonight it stings, but they should be remembered not for today but their entire body of work throughout their careers where they truly made a difference in the culture of our program."

Head Coach Jacquie Joseph


STATS AND STORYLINES

  • Kristina Zalewski surrendered a pair of runs to the Wildcats in the top of the first inning, Rachel Lewis stroked a one-out single and then stole second, and came around to score on an error by the Spartans on a ball into right center to make it 1-0 and leaving Morgan Nelson on third; Sammi Nettling put down a sac bunt to make it 2-0 when Nelson came home on the play.

  • An infield single by Kenna Wilkey led off the second, and Brooke Marquez moved her to second on a ground ball. Morgan Newport's offering ricocheted off of Zalewski's left knee, putting two on for the Wildcats. Lily Novak singled to right to bring home a third run, and that spelled the end of the outing for Zalewski, who was replaced by Bridgette Rainey. Rainey gave up consecutive singles to Sabrina Rabin and Lewis to push two more runs across and make it a 5-0 ballgame in favor of Northwestern. A walk issued to Nelson loaded the bases for Nettling, who singled up the middle to score two more runs and make it 7-0. Rainey walked Marissa Panko to load the bases again, and after she got a fly ball to center for the second out of the frame, a double up the left field line by Marqueez cleared the three previous runners and pushed the NU lead to 10-0 with two outs in the second inning. The Spartans made another pitching change, bringing on McKenna Gregory, who got a ground ball to second to end the inning.

  • NU got another run in the top of the fifth when the pitcher Newport led off the inning with a single down the left field line. Sabrina Rabin came up with a one-out single, and moved to second on a foul out by Rachel Lewis. Nelson was hit by a pitch to load the bases, and Nettling picked up her fourth RBI of the day on a bases-loaded walk.

    2018 BIG TEN SOFTBALL ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
    Tara Trainer, Jr., P, Indiana
    Taylor Uden, Sr., 1B, Indiana
    Allison Doocy, So., P, Iowa
    Kaitlyn Eveland, Jr., 3B, Michigan State
    Lea Foerster, Sr., OF, Michigan State
    Maddie Houlihan, Jr., OF, Minnesota
    Kendyl Lindaman, So., C, Minnesota
    MaKenna Partain, So., 2B, Minnesota
    Dani Wagner, Sr., OF, Minnesota
    Rachel Lewis, Fr., 2B, Northwestern
    Morgan Newport, So., P, Northwestern
    Sabrina Rabin, Sr., OF, Northwestern


    MOST OUTSTANDING PLAYER: Maddie Houlihan, Jr., OF, Minnesota

     

     

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