Lincoln - Powered by the big bat of Ashlie Ortega, Colorado State scored 11 runs over the first three innings and added single runs in the fourth and fifth frames to defeat Nebraska, 13-8, on Sunday at the Doris Bair Softball Complex.
Ortega hit three home runs in the game, a solo shot in the first, a two-run blast in the second and a three-run homer in the third. She finished 4-for-4 with six RBIs. Led by Ortega, CSU pounded out at least two hits in every inning but one, out-hitting the Huskers 15-10.
Offensively for Nebraska, the Nos. 2, 3 and 4 hitters teamed up to do the majority of the damage. Junior Taylor Edwdards went 1-for-1 with a solo home run and three walks out of the No. 2 spot, while senior Brooke Thomason finished 2-for-4 with a double, a home run and three RBIs batting third and junior Kylee Muir was also 2-for-4 with a double, a home run and three RBIs. Combined, Edwards, Thomason and Muir finished 5-for-9 with three home runs and seven RBIs.
In the circle, freshman right-hander Danica Bishop started and took the loss, allowing seven runs on seven hits in 1.1 innings. Fellow freshman right-hander Emily Lockman pitched the final 4.2 innings, allowing six runs (five earned) on eight hits.
Taylor Edwards gave Nebraska a 1-0 lead two batters into the game with a solo home run to left, her third of the weekend and fourth of the fall. Thomason followed by lining the very next pitch over the fence in center for a solo home run that gave Nebraska back-to-back home runs and a 2-0 lead.
Ortega then began the bottom of the first with a solo home run of her own to center. A one-out walk and a double put Rams at second and third before an RBI ground out to second tied the game at 2-2. A two-out, two-strike infield single brought home the third run of the inning and put CSU on top 3-2.
Nebraska tied the game in the top of the second. Freshman Sammi Noland singled with one out and junior Tatum Edwards came on to pinch run. Edwards stole second and scored on an RBI single from sophomore Jordan Bettiol.
The Rams grabbed the lead right back in the bottom of the frame, jumping to a 5-3 lead on Ortega's second home run of the game, this time a two-run shot. Another two-run blast two batters later, this one by Emily Pohl, stretched the lead to 7-3 and marked the end of the day for Bishop.
Muir led off the top of the third with a double for Nebraska, but the Huskers were unable to turn the hit into a run.
In the bottom of the frame, a bloop single and an error put Rams at first and third with none out. Another bloop single drove in a run and gave Colorado State an 8-3 lead. Then with two on and one out, Ortega blasted her third home run of the game to stretch the lead to 11-3.
In the top of the fourth, Nebraska loaded the bases with one out on a pair of walks to Bettiol and Taylor Edwards and an infield single by senior Gabby Banda. Thomason then ripped a two-run double to the fence in center, cutting the lead to 11-5. Muir then blasted a 2-2 pitch well over the fence in right center for a three-run homer that pulled Nebraska to within 11-8. A single from freshman Hailey Decker and a walk to senior Courtney Breault put Huskers on first and second with one out following the home run, but NU was unable to score.
Colorado State also kept its offense going in the fourth, adding a run on a one-out, RBI single. On the play, a second Ram attempted to score but was thrown out by Thomason in right field.
CSU scored for the fifth straight inning with a two-out, RBI single in the bottom of the fifth that extended the lead to 13-8.
The Rams were held off the scoreboard for the first time in the bottom of the sixth, but Nebraska was retired in order in the seventh.
The Huskers conclude their fall exhibition season later this afternoon against UNO.