April 6, 2012
NIU-EMU GM 1 Box Score
NIU-EMU GM 2 Box Score
YPSILANTI, Mich. - The Northern Illinois University softball team split its doubleheader with Eastern Michigan in Mid-American Conference play at Varsity Field Friday afternoon.
After dropping Game One, 2-0, the Huskies (14-20, 2-4) responded with a 4-0 victory over EMU (15-19, 4-2) in Game Two. Freshman Megan Dortch (Reno, Nev./Bishop Manogue) improved to 10-11 on the season, turning in a strong outing from the pitcher's circle throwing a two-hit complete game shutout.
"The pitcher's did a great job today," NIU head coach Lindsay Chouinard said. "Both Megan and Jessica [Sturm] had great outings and gave us a good opportunity to win two ballgames. At the end of the day, we're grateful we got one."
NIU jumped on top early, with an RBI double by Amanda Sheppard (Oak Forest, Ill./Oak Forest) to give NIU a 1-0 lead. With two on and one out in the top of the fifth, Jessica Sturm (Wichita, Kan./Goddard) broke the game wide open when she doubled to right center to clear the bases and extended the Huskie lead to 3-0. The Huskies capitalized on an Eagle error to score their fourth and final run of the game in the top of the sixth.
The Northern Illinois offense, which mustered two hits in Game One, erupted in the nightcap, pounding out 11 hits, including three doubles. Erika Oswald (Glenview, Ill./Glenbrook South) led the charge, going 3-for-4 with a run scored from the eighth spot. Leadoff hitter Nicole Gremillion (Missouri City, Texas/Elkins) was the only other Huskie to record a multi-hit game going 2-for-5.
"Maybe it was what we talked about in between games, but in all reality the offense needs to set a better tone and they need to have better energy all game long on the offensive side. I think they did a better job of that in the second game."
NIU continues MAC play Saturday when the Huskies travel to Mt. Pleasant, Mich. for a two-game series with the Chippewas. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. Central Time.