CHAMPAIGN, IL–(NU Athletics May 11)–Behind fifth-year senior Courtney Wallace, the Nebraska softball team (34-19) shut out Illinois, 1-0, in Champaign on Thursday night to advance to the Big Ten Tournament Semifinal.
Junior Sydney Gray produced the game’s lone run with an RBI double with in the bottom of the first inning that scored freshman Katelyn Caneda. That was the only run Wallace would need, as she pitched her fourth shutout of the season.
Wallace (23-13) scattered three hits while Illinois had only one runner reach scoring position. Wallace also tallied four strikeouts.
Addy Jarvis fell to 6-5 on the season, recording the loss in the circle for Illinois (29-28). Jarvis pitched 4.0 innings, giving up three hits and one run.
The Huskers one run came in the first inning. With one out, Katelyn Caneda doubled to left field. Sydney Gray followed with a single to left center, scoring Caneda, and giving NU the 1-0 lead.
Illinois reached scoring position for the first time in the fourth inning. A leadoff single got the first batter on base for the first time for the Illini. A sacrifice bunt moved the runner to second. An NU fielding error added a runner at first, but two straight outs stranded two runners as Nebraska held the 1-0 lead.
NU looked to extend the lead after two walks, but a pop up and a double play held the score at 1-0.
The Fighting Illini looked to rally late, but a strikeout and two ground outs secured the win as Nebraska advanced to the Big Ten Tournament Semifinal against Northwestern.
The Huskers and Wildcats face off at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 12, in Champaign, Ill. The game will be broadcasted live on the Big Ten Network.