Softball Races Past Purdue
Thursday, April 13, 2006
For the second time in their last three games in West Lafayette, Ind., the Crusaders shutout the Purdue Boilermakers by a 2-0 score, downing the hosts Thursday afternoon at the Varsity Softball Complex.

The win is only the fifth in 25 all-time games against Purdue, but gives the Brown and Gold a very solid 2-2-1 record against the Boilermakers in three seasons under Head Coach Randy Schneider. Valpo's three other wins in the series all came in the program's infancy, from 1983-85.

In Thursday's game, Chris Halstead (Indianapolis, Ind./Cathedral) set the tone early from the circle, setting down six of the first seven batters she faced. Halstead would pitch into the fifth inning, allowing only three hits.

Beth Adamski (Saint John, Ind./Lake Central) had the biggest hit of the game in the fourth inning, grounding a two-out single up the middle to score Taylor Callahan (Pendergrass, Ga./Greater Atlanta Christian), who had singled earlier in the inning. The run came off Purdue's Brooke Baker, Adamski's former high school teammate and the Big Ten's 2005 Co-Most Outstanding Pitcher.

In the sixth, Valpo put Callahan on first and Alicia Ashburn (Mishawaka, Ind./Mishawaka) on third with two out and Adamski again at the plate. This time, however, the Crusaders got a run with their feet, coaxing a throw to second when Callahan made a move from first, giving Ashburn time to beat the return throw to the plate with the game's second run.

Andrea Zappia (Indianapolis, Ind./Franklin Central) came on in relief of Halstead in the fifth and built on her own school record, recording her fifth save of the season by holding Purdue hitless. Halstead moved above .500 with the win, improving her season record to 5-4.

Callahan had two of Valpo's four hits, with Adamski and Ann Sievert (Davenport, Iowa/Assumption) tallied the others.

Baker took the loss for Purdue (25-22), allowing a run on two hits in three innings of work. The Boilermakers had three hits on the afternoon, all doubles, but saw a runner caught stealing and another picked off.

Valpo (14-19) will take a break from Mid-Continent Conference action this weekend, hosting IPFW Saturday for a doubleheader at the Valparaiso University Softball Field beginning at 12:00 p.m.

box score