Nebraska Softball vs Purdue Photo No. 19

Nebraska's Brooke Andrews (27) talks to Ava Bredwell (24) during the game against Purdue at Bowlin Stadium on Friday, March 24, 2023, in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Coming into Nebraska’s meeting with Maryland, the two teams were very evenly matched on paper. Maryland held a 26-11 record, while the Huskers came in at 25-12. The Huskers held a 7-4 away record, while the Terrapins stood at 7-2 at home, so it appeared bound to be a close matchup. Instead, this one went  in relatively clear favor of the Huskers.

The Huskers wasted no time getting on the board in their first of three games against Maryland, similar to their meeting on May 2, 2021, which resulted in an 8-0 Nebraska win.

In the top of the first inning, freshman Katelyn Caneda hit a double, which drove in junior Billie Andrews after a leadoff walk got her on base. The next couple innings were quiet with little action, until the Huskers scored two more runs in the fourth inning. Junior Brooke Andrews hit a two-run home run, which drove in freshman Dakota Carter. This was Andrews’ sixth home run in the last ten games, proving her dominance on offense.  

Junior Sarah Harness took to the mound for the Huskers to begin the weekend. She had a rather successful outing, as she went for three innings, struck out three, didn’t give up any runs, and didn’t walk anyone. Senior Courtney Wallace took the mound for the rest of the game, getting awarded with the win. She went four innings, gave up one hit, struck out four batters and walked three. It was Wallace’s 17th win of the season, matching a career high.

The Huskers finished the day with three runs, five hits, struck out five times, walked twice and committed one error. Overall, it was a clean seven innings of play from Nebraska and is a huge momentum booster as the season begins to wind down.

Friday night’s game marked Nebraska’s ninth shutout of the season, proving their dominance in the field and their ability to shut down solid opposition. Wallace, as she often is, was the key to Friday’s stellar defense. She boasts a 3.19 ERA and has 78 strikeouts on the season with just five walks given up.  

Maryland senior pitcher Courtney Wyche, who was awarded the Big Ten Pitcher of the Week last week, threw the entire seven innings against Nebraska. Despite a solid outing from her, the Terrapins’ lack of offense led to them getting shut out in the first game of the series. 

With only a little over a month left in regular season play, each game will be crucial down the stretch as Nebraska eyes a second straight NCAA tournament bid. 

The Huskers, who now hold an impressive 26-12 record on the season, will be back in action on Saturday against Maryland with a chance to win their third in a row.