The Northern Illinois University softball team suffered a 2-0 setback to DePaul at Cacciatore Stadium Wednesday.
Jessica Sturm (Goddard, Kan./Goddard) pitched well, scattering seven hits while allowing two runs. Unfortunately for NIU, the offense was unable to breakthrough against Blue Demon (29-19) pitcher Kirsten Verdun.
“They didn’t really hit Jess that hard,” said NIU head coach Christina Sutcliffe. “We had some defensive blunders that don’t really show up on the scoreboard. Both runs really should’ve have scored.
“Offensively, their pitcher did a really nice job of mixing speed and keeping us off balance. We were guessing in the batter’s box.”
The Huskies (20-29) were held to three hits, with Amanda Sheppard (Oak Forest, Ill./Oak Forest), Nicole Gremillion (Missouri City, Texas/Elkins) and Jennifer Barnett (Indianapolis, Ind./Roncalli) each recording hits.
NIU’s best scoring chance came in the top of the fourth. Down, 1-0, after DePaul plated a run in the bottom of the third, NIU had runners first and second with one out. However, Gremillion, who was at second, was thrown out at third when Shelby Miller (Ottawa, Kan./Ottawa) reached on a fielder’s choice. Sturm then lined out to end the inning.
The Blue Demons tacked on an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth before retiring the Huskies in the top of the seventh without incident.
The Huskies return to the diamond Friday when NIU takes on Mid-American Conference West Division rival Toledo in a DeKalb doubleheader. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. Central Time.
For more information on NIU softball and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.