Photo by Stephanie Carpenter/Nebraska Communications

Huskers Show Potential In Fall Season

By NU Athletic Communications

The Nebraska softball team finished its fall exhibition season with a 7-1 record, defeating South Dakota twice, Colorado State twice, UNO, Bellevue and Butler. NU’s only loss came in the second of its three games against Colorado State.

The Huskers dominated the fall, outscoring their opponents, 60-20. Nebraska hit .325 as a team during the fall slate, with five Huskers posting a batting average above .400. Sophomore Tristen Edwards led the offensive effort for the Huskers batting .556. In eight games, she went 15-for-27 with a pair of home runs, two triples, four doubles, 10 runs and 18 RBIs. Sophomore Bree Boruff also had an impressive fall, hitting .500 (7-for-14), with two doubles, 10 runs and three stolen bases in four tries. Junior Madi Unzicker came back strong after missing the entire 2017 season due to an injury. The Omaha native played seven games during the fall and hit .471 (8-for-17), with two doubles and 10 RBIs. Junior Bri Cassidy and senior Gina Metzler rounded out the group of .400 hitters, as Cassidy went 5-for-12 (.417) and Metzler finished 7-for-17 (.412).

In the circle, Nebraska had an opportunity to  utilize each member of its five-pitcher staff. As a staff, the Huskers posted a 1.90 ERA with 56 strikeouts in 59.0 innings and held opposing hitters to a .219 average and just six extra-base hits in 224 at bats. Senior right-hander Kaylan Jablonski saw the most action, appearing in five games and finishing the fall with a 2-0 record and a 1.02 ERA. In 20.2 innings, Jablonski allowed only three runs and just one extra-base hit, while striking out 26 and walking only one. Newcomers Regan Mergele and Olivia Ferrell also saw significant innings. Ferrell, a freshman, pitched 14.0 innings and allowed just one earned run and eight hits, limiting opposing hitters to a .160 average while compiling a 2-0 record with one save. Mergele, the 2017 National Junior College Athletic Association Division Pitcher of the Year, posted a 1-1 record with one save and allowed only one extra-base hit in her 12.0 innings. Sophomore left-hander Sydney McLeod (2-0) made four appearances and limited opponents to a .211 average in her 9.1 innings, while senior right-hander Caitlin Bartsch allowed only two singles and struck out three in her 3.0 scoreless innings of work.

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