Purdue Tops Hawkeyes

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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — The University of Iowa softball team dropped a 4-2 decision to Purdue on Friday night in game one of the series at Bittinger Stadium.
“Purdue came out ready to roll in the first inning,” said UI head coach Marla Looper. “They put a run up in the first and we weren’t able to hold them off in the second inning because of a couple of mistakes. We are two very similar teams, so it’s going to come down to who takes care of the ball and who has the more timely hits. The challenge is attacking and getting on the board first and then holding them off.”
Devin Cantu went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run, while Cheyenne Pratt chipped in a hit. Shayla Starkenburg suffered the loss, throwing five strikeouts in 6.0 innings pitched.
Purdue (15-21, 4-0 Big Ten) took the lead in the bottom of the first inning as Mallory Baker hit an RBI double to the shortstop. The Boilermakers extended their lead in the second frame on a Lexi Huffman RBI double and a Maya Hughes RBI single.
The Hawkeyes cut into the home team’s lead in the top of the third inning. Mullarkey reached first on catcher’s interference before scoring on an RBI double by Cantu. Cantu then scored on a throwing error by the Purdue catcher.
The Boilermakers added a run on a Hawkeye miscue in the bottom of the fifth.
“You make your own luck,” said Looper. “Sometimes you get things to go your way and sometimes you don’t. We have to take care of the ball. We face Purdue again tomorrow and I think we will see something similar, so we have to adjust to it.”
The Hawkeyes (6-21, 0-4 Big Ten) face Purdue on Saturday in game two of the series. First pitch is slated for 12 p.m. (CT) on BTN Plus.