Haley Donaldson hit a grand slam in the second inning, her first career home run.
Photo by Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications

Home Runs Power Huskers to 15-11 Win

By NU Athletic Communications

Nebraska 
15
11
Omaha

Inning-by-Inning
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H E
Omaha 2 0 0 2 1 5 1   11 17 2
Nebraska 5 4 0 3 0 3 X   15 18 3
Pitching
  IP H R ER BB SO
W - Clanton (4-10) 0.0 4 5 4 0 0
L - McClure (5-5) 5.2 13 10 8 5 1
S - McLeod (1) 1.1 4 1 1 0 0
Individual Leaders
  AB R H RBI BB HR
Haley Donaldson 4 2 2 4 0 1
MJ Knighten 5 3 3 3 0 1
Game Notes

The 26 combined runs made the game the highest-scoring game in Bowlin Stadium history…Nebraska set season highs with 15 runs and 18 hits… Nebraska scored a season-high five runs in the first inning….six Huskers had multiple hits in the win and five drove in multiple runs…MJ Knighten made her 200th career start – all at third base – against Omaha….MJ Knighten has produced multiple hits in each of her last five games after her third consecutive three-hit game vs. UNO…freshman Haley Donaldson hit her first-career home run and grand slam in the second inning…she finished with a career-high four RBIs and a career-high two hits….freshman Alexis Perry went 4-for-4 to produce her first career four-hit game…junior Austen Urness earned her third-career three-hit game…freshman Sydney McLeod earned her career first save… Alyvia Simmons drew one walk to extend her streak to 11 consecutive games reaching base safely.

Lincoln - Fueled by three home runs, the Nebraska softball team scored a season-high 15 runs in a 15-11 victory over Omaha on Wednesday afternoon in the highest-scoring game in Bowlin Stadium history.

The Huskers produced season highs in runs and hits (18), while tying their season high with three home runs. The 26 combined runs are the most in Bowlin Stadium's 16-year history, eclipsing 25 combined runs in NU's 15-10 win over Michigan State in the 2015 Big Ten Conference opener.

Nebraska (8-17) sent nine batters to the base in both the first and second innings en route to taking an early 9-2 lead. The big blows were a three-run homer by senior Cassie McClure in the bottom of the first and a grand slam by freshman Haley Donaldson one inning later. After UNO rallied to cut the lead to two in the sixth inning, senior MJ Knighten provided Nebraska with its final blow, a three-run homer that put the game just out of the Mavs' reach.

Six Huskers had multiple hits in the win, five drove in multiple runs and five scored multiple times. McClure was 2-for-3 with three RBIs, while Donaldson was 2-for-4 with a career-high two hits and four RBIs and Knighten was 3-for-5 with three RBIs and three runs. Freshman Alexis Perry went 4-for-4 to set her career high in hits, while junior Austen Urness was 3-for-5 with a pair of RBIs and freshman Tristen Edwards went 2-for-5. Junior Kaylan Jablonski added two RBIs with a pinch-hit, two-run single in the fourth inning.

In addition to homering and driving in three runs, McClure also earned the victory in the circle to even her record at 5-5. In 5.2 innings, McClure allowed 10 runs (eight earned). Freshman left-hander Sydney McLeod earned her first career save, allowing one run over the final 1.1 innings.

Abbie Clanton (4-10) took the loss for Omaha, which fell to 9-20 on the season. Clanton, the starter, failed to get an out, allowing five runs (four earned) and four hits to the five batters she faced.

The scoring started early as UNO jumped out to a 1-0 lead when Lizzie Noble led off the game with a home run on an 0-2 pitch. Lia Mancuso then put down a bunt single and advanced to second on a Husker throwing error before scoring on a bloop RBI single from Nicole Warren. 

In the bottom of the frame, the first five Huskers all reached base and scored. Sophomore Alyvia Simmons reached on an error to begin the game before Knighten singled. Edwards then singled off the top of the fence in right to load the bases. Urness tied the game with a two-run single before McClure put the Huskers on top 5-2 with a three-run homer.

Nebraska put up five more runs in the bottom of the first. Simmons drew a leadoff walk before Knighten singled. Following a fielder's choice, Knighten stole third and Edwards stole second. McClure then walked before Donaldson hit a two-out grand slam down the left field line to push the lead to 9-2.

After a scoreless third inning, Omaha scored twice in the top of the fourth. The Mavs had the bases loaded with two outs following a Husker error that extended the inning. Kelly Pattison then delivered a two-run single to cut the lead to 9-4. UNO had the bases loaded and threatened to score more before the inning ending on a nice sliding stop by junior second baseman Laura Barrow, who flipped to Donaldson at second base for a force out.

Nebraska answered back with three runs in the bottom of the frame. McClure and Donaldson reached on back-to-back one-out singles. Perry brought home the first run with an RBI double to center before Jablonski delivered a pinch-hit, two-run single that put Nebraska on top, 12-4.

UNO avoided the run-rule by scoring one run in the top of the fifth inning. The Huskers then had a chance to end the game early in the bottom of the fifth needing only one run to bring the run-rule into effect, but Nebraska left the bases loaded.

Omaha then continued to fight, plating four more runs in the top of the sixth, trimming the lead to 12-9 on a two-out grand slam from Hailey Bartz. Back-to-back walks following the grand slam brought the tying run to the plate and marked the end of the game for McClure. McLeod came on and allowed an RBI single to Mancuso, but on the play Nebraska was able to record the final out on the runner trying to advance from second to third.

After Omaha had cut the lead to 12-10, Nebraska earned some needed breathing room by scoring three times in the bottom of the sixth. Perry began the inning with a single - her fourth hit of the game - before Barrow walked. That set the stage for Knighten's three-run homer that stretched the lead to 15-10.

In the top of hte seventh, Omaha scored one run and had two runners on before McLeod retired the final two hitters to wrap up the marathon game.

Following its win over Omaha, the Huskers open their Big Ten Conference schedule this weekend when eighth-ranked Minnesota comes to Bowlin Stadium for a three-game series on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Box Score

                             2017 Nebraska Softball
                               Omaha at Nebraska
                 Mar 22, 2017 at Lincoln, Neb. (Bowlin Stadium)

Omaha 11 (9-20)

Player                    AB  R  H RBI BB SO PO  A LOB
------------------------------------------------------
Lizzie Noble cf..........  4  2  2  2   1  0  3  0   0
Lia Mancuso lf...........  5  2  3  1   0  0  2  0   2
Nicole Warren 1b.........  5  1  2  1   0  1  6  0   0
Kelly Pattison rf........  5  1  3  2   0  0  0  0   0
Vicky Kinney 3b/2b.......  4  0  2  0   0  0  3  2   0
 Kylie Schwarting pr.....  0  0  0  0   0  0  0  0   0
Emma Dargy 2b/3b.........  3  1  1  1   2  0  1  3   3
Kaitlynn Hunt c..........  4  2  1  0   1  0  2  0   4
Hailey Bartz ss..........  5  1  2  4   0  0  1  1   2
Natalie Mostek dp........  3  1  1  0   1  0  0  0   0
Abbie Clanton p..........  0  0  0  0   0  0  0  0   0
 Laura Roecker p.........  0  0  0  0   0  0  0  0   0
Totals................... 38 11 17 11   5  1 18  6  12

Nebraska 15 (8-17)

Player                    AB  R  H RBI BB SO PO  A LOB
------------------------------------------------------
Alyvia Simmons cf........  4  2  0  0   1  0  5  0   1
MJ Knighten 3b...........  5  3  3  3   0  0  1  2   0
Tristen Edwards rf.......  5  2  2  0   0  0  1  0   0
Austen Urness dp/c.......  5  1  3  2   0  0  0  0   0
 Bree Boruff pr..........  0  0  0  0   0  0  0  0   0
Cassie McClure p/dp......  4  2  2  3   1  1  0  1   1
 Taylor Otte pr..........  0  1  0  0   0  0  0  0   0
Haley Donaldson ss.......  4  2  2  4   0  1  2  1   0
Gina Metzler lf..........  4  0  1  0   0  0  1  1   3
Alexis Perry 1b..........  4  1  4  1   0  0  4  0   0
 Lotte Sjulin pr.........  0  1  0  0   0  0  0  0   0
Laura Barrow 2b..........  2  0  0  0   1  0  4  2   3
 Kaylan Jablonski ph.....  1  0  1  2   0  0  0  0   0
Bri Cassidy c............  0  0  0  0   0  0  3  0   0
 Sydney McLeod p.........  0  0  0  0   0  0  0  0   0
Totals................... 38 15 18 15   3  2 21  7   8

Score by Innings                  R  H  E
-----------------------------------------
Omaha............... 200 215 1 - 11 17  2
Nebraska............ 540 303 X - 15 18  3
-----------------------------------------

E - Dargy(7); Roecker(3); Donaldson(1); Metzler(1); Cassidy(2). LOB - Mavs
12; Huskers 8. 2B - Dargy(2); Perry(3). HR - Noble(2); Bartz(1);
Knighten(3); McClure(2); Donaldson(1). HBP - Kinney. SB - Knighten(9);
Edwards(1).

Omaha                  IP  H  R ER BB SO AB BF  NP
--------------------------------------------------
Abbie Clanton.......  0.0  4  5  4  0  0  5  5  17
Laura Roecker.......  6.0 14 10 10  3  2 33 36 124

Nebraska               IP  H  R ER BB SO AB BF  NP
--------------------------------------------------
Cassie McClure......  5.2 13 10  8  5  1 31 37 144
Sydney McLeod.......  1.1  4  1  1  0  0  7  7  18

Win - McClure (5-5).  Loss - Clanton (4-10).  Save - McLeod (1).
WP - McClure(1). HBP - by McClure (Kinney). Pitches/strikes: Clanton 17/10;
Roecker 124/75; McClure 144/94; McLeod 18/13.
Umpires - HP: Anita Robinett  1B: Joe Havenhill  3B: Renee Williams
Start: 3:04 pm   Time: 2:45   Attendance: 391
Clanton faced 5 batters in the 1st.
Game: NEB25

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