Brittany Atteberry (Schererville, Ind./Lake Central H.S.) tossed a five-hit shutout in the nightcap helping Valparaiso earn a 3-0 victory over Western Illinois and split a doubleheader at the Valparaiso University Softball Field. The Westerwinds won the opener 5-3.
Atteberry allowed just one hit through the first five innings and struck out three while walking just one in the complete game effort to help Valpo earn its first victory of the season.
The Crusaders scored all three runs in the fourth. Courtney LaFerle (Elgin, Ill./Larkin H.S.) doubled to center to score two runs and Alicia Ashburn (Mishawaka, Ind./Mishawaka H.S.) singled home the third as Valpo sent eight hitters to the plate in the inning. The Brown and Gold tallied four hits in the inning.
Emily Tkaczyk (Hawthorn Woods, Ill./Mundelein H.S.) had two hits in the opener for the Crusaders.
In the opener, Western Illinois (12-13, 3-1 Mid-Con) scored in the opening inning but Valpo responded with two in the second. Ashburn tripled to right to score Stacy Adamski (Saint John, Ind./Lake Central H.S.) and Kelly Silvey (Indianapolis, Ind./Bishop Chatard H.S.) followed with a double to plate Ashburn. Courtney LaFerle (Elgin, Ill./Larkin H.S.) drove home Tkaczyk with a double in the third to give Valpo a 3-1 lead, but the Crusaders would manage just one hit the rest of the way.
The Westerwinds scored one in the fifth and Maureen Troller's two-run homer in the sixth put the visitors in front. Western Illinois added an insurance run in the seventh. Ashley Gilland went 3-for-3 in the opener for the Westerwinds.
Valparaiso (1-22, 1-7) will return home on Monday afternoon to host Bowling Green in a single game. First pitch is set for 3 p.m. at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.