Softball Heads to No. 24 Northwestern for Midweek Game

Senior Natalie Hernandez enters competition on a seven-game hitting streak.
Senior Natalie Hernandez enters competition on a seven-game hitting streak.

April 1, 2014

CHICAGO – The UIC softball team (6-13) will break from Horizon League action and travel north for a non-conference matchup with No. 24 Northwestern (19-8) on Wednesday. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. CT at Drysdale Field in Evanston, Ill.

The Flames are coming off of a 1-1 performance against Valparaiso on March 30 after taking a 10-2 win in five innings and suffering a 6-2 defeat in game two. Junior Erica Hampton went 4-for-6 (.667) at the plate to lead UIC on offense, followed by junior Eleni Polites (.600) and senior Natalie Hernandez (.500). Sophomore Bridget Boyle picked up her third win of the season on the mound, while sophomore Alice Fitzpatrick took the loss.

Senior Jacki Fletcher owns the top batting average this season with .434 (23-for-53), as junior Paige Peterson (.382) and Hernandez (.365) are also hitting above .300. Hernandez additionally boasts the most RBI (13) and the best slugging percentage (.635) after six doubles, one triple and three home runs.

Northwestern hosts the Flames after falling, 1-2, in its series with then-No. 19 Nebraska (March 28-30). The Wildcats went 15-5 in the preseason and have since collected wins against Wisconsin and Northern Illinois.

Through competition this season, Northwestern has six starters hitting above .300, with Emily Allard (.406; 41-for-101) and Andrea Filler (.400; 30-for-75) leading the way. Marisa Bast has tallied 32 RBI on the season and has the second-most home runs with four behind Brianna LeBeau’s five, while Filler owns the top slugging percentage at .653.

On the mound for the Wildcats, Kristen Wood has received 13 of the 19 starts and holds a 10-3 record. Wood has produced a 3.95 ERA through 83.1 innings while striking out 107 batters, as Amy Letourneau (3-1) owns the best ERA with 1.40. Nicole Bond (1-0) and Sammy Albanese (5-4) have additionally received starts for Northwestern and have respective ERAs of 4.07 and 4.36.

During last season’s contest, the Wildcats took an 8-5 win after the Flames tried to rally back from an 8-0 deficit. Northwestern has taken the last five meetings as UIC is just 11-27 in the all-time series.

The Last Meeting
May 1, 2013
Chicago, Ill.
Softball Late-Game Surge Falls Just Short
The Flames battled from an eight-run deficit to score four runs in the bottom of the sixth inning and one in the bottom of the seventh, but Northwestern maintained control to defeat UIC 8-5 Wednesday evening at Flames Field.