Freshman infielder Rachael Metzger delivered a go-ahead, pinch-hit RBI single in the sixth inning, and sophomore pitcher Meagan Prince threw two scoreless innings of relief to lead Kentucky’s softball team to a 5-4 victory over Northwestern in the opening round of the NCAA South Bend Regional on Friday in Indiana.
UK will play Ball State — who defeated host Notre Dame 6-3 in Friday’s second game — at noon on Saturday with the winner earning a spot in the regional finals on Sunday.
The win for Prince moved her to 13-8 on the season with a 3.47 earned run average. Sylver Samuel was 2-for-3 with a run scored, and Nikki Sagermann had a double and two RBI.
Miranda Kramer pitched a one-hitter and Shawna Sadler had a two-run single to lead Western Kentucky past North Carolina 2-1 in Athens, Ga. The only hit Kramer (25-8) gave up came in the bottom of the seventh on Kristen Brown’s 23rd home run of the season. The Lady Hilltoppers will next play Georgia, which defeated Central Connecticut State 6-1, at noon Saturday.
Louisville’s softball team was on the wrong end of a one-hitter. The Cardinals lost 1-0 to Kansas in Columbia, Mo. Louisville will face Indiana State in an elimination game at 6 p.m. Saturday.