Softball's Bell sets career homerun record

April 18, 2013

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Cassidy Bell crushed a leadoff home run to open the second game of a doubleheader with Purdue Wednesday (April 17), taking the top spot on the Penn State all-time career leaderboard in the process with her 35th blast. The Nittany Lions (11-27, 2-11 Big Ten) and Boilermakers (20-23, 7-7 Big Ten) split the twinbill at Beard Field and Nittany Lion Softball Park under the lights on a cool and clear Pennsylvania evening.

After Penn State batted its way to an 8-4 win in the first game, Purdue responded by taking a 12-3 decision to close the night.

Penn State returns to action at home at 6 p.m. Friday in the series opener against Northwestern. The squads meet again at 4 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday.

Along with her home run, the 18th of the season, Bell (Bakersfield, Calif.) finished the day with four hits, including two doubles, to tie freshman Reina Furuya (Waipahu, Hawaii) for the team lead. Senior Shannon Hutchinson (Sewell, N.J.) and Alyssa Renwick (Laurens, S.C.) and freshman Karlie Habitz (Newhall, Calif.) finished the day with two as the Nittany Lions edged Purdue in total hits, 17-16. Senior infielders Lauren Yao (Los Angeles, Calif.) and Kailyn Johnson (Yorba Linda, Calif.) and junior Alyssa Sovereign (La Canada, Calif.) recorded one each.

Of the team's 17 hits, eight were multi-base strikes, including seven doubles.

Freshman hurler Macy Jones (Ashburn, Va.) (10-12) tossed 11.2 of the team's 14.0 innings, scattering 13 hits while allowing just five earned runs and striking out four. She picked up her 10th win of the season in the first game while also notching her 25th RBI of the year on a sac fly.

The Nittany Lions put together an 11-hit effort to take game one, 8-4. Bell, Furuya, Habitz and Renwick notched two-hit performances, including a pair of doubles from Habitz, while Johnson, Sovereign and Hutchinson had one apiece. Sovereign led the team with two RBI and Bell, Jones, Johnson, Furuya, Renwick and Hutchinson each recorded one.

Jones picked up the victory in the circle with her 10th complete-game effort of the year, allowing two earned runs on seven hits with four strikeouts. Purdue's Lilly Fecho (8-13) was dealt the loss, giving up five runs in 4.2 innings of work.

The number three was prevalent in the third inning as Purdue led off with a trio of runs to break the scoreless tie in the top of the inning. The Boilermakers took advantage of a pair of errors while stringing together four hits to take a 3-0 lead before the Nittany Lions answered with a three-spot of their own.

Hutchinson reached choice on a fielder's choice and scrambled to third in the next at-bat after Bell sent the first pitch to center field for a double. Jones brought in Hutchinson on a sacrifice fly to left field before Johnson tallied a double back to right center to bring home Bell. A double for Furuya, the team's third of the inning, forced a pitching change for the Boilermakers, but the PSU offense continued with a walk for Habitz and a single from Renwick. The run ended there, however, as Alex Whittemore guided Purdue out of the loaded-base jam.

Penn State took the lead in the fourth as Hutchinson reached second on a throwing error by Purdue's third baseman before Bell brought her home on a slicing single through the right side.

After the Boilermakers tied the tilt in the fifth, the Nittany Lions made their biggest splash of the night in the bottom of the frame with four runs on five hits. Furuya led off with a single, her second hit of the game, before classmate Habitz doubled to left center to put them on third and second, respectively.

With Taylor Abeyta (San Diego, Calif.) running for Habitz, Renwick placed an RBI single in left field before Sovereign added a pair of RBI to her total with the team's fifth double of the day to score Abeyta and Renwick. After Yao was hit by a pitch, Hutchinson joined the RBI list with a single back up the middle to allow Sovereign to cross the plate and set the final score at 8-4.

Jones retired the final six Purdue batters to give Penn State its second Big Ten victory of the season.

In the second game, Purdue scored 10 over the final three innings on the way to a 12-3 victory, including a six-run top of the seventh. Bell and Furuya both tallied their second two-hit games of the day while Yao and Hutchinson singled. Jones lasted 4.2 innings, allowing three earned runs, before Marissa Diescher (Livingston Manor, N.Y.) closed out by tossing the final 2.1 frames, giving up eight runs on three hits.

Bell gave Penn State a 1-0 lead in the first as she connected on the second pitch of her at-bat to tally the record-setting home run to left field.

Yao singled on a full-count offering in the second and the Lions were held off the bases in the third as the Boilermakers jumped out to a 4-1 lead before the Blue and White plated a pair in the bottom of the fifth to cut the lead to one. Hutchinson singled past the shortstop on an 0-2 pitch before an error allowed her to advance to third on Bell's fielder's choice. With Bell and Hutchinson on first and third, the two completed the double steal to make it 4-2 before Bell scored on a fielding error by the Purdue first baseman to make it 4-3.

Penn State could only muster one more hit in the final two frames, a double by Bell in the seventh, as Purdue posted eight runs to secure the series split.

Bell now has hits in eight of the last 10 contests and 31 of 37 in 2013 as she tallied her team-best 11th and 12th multi-hit games of the season. With 107 RBI in her career, Bell is now tied with Erin Norton (2000-03) for fourth all-time in the program record books while she tied Megan Humphrey (2000-03) for fourth in doubles with 38.

Renwick tallied her 11th multi-hit game of 2013 while Habitz and Furuya are up to five and four, respectively, in their freshman campaigns. Sovereign's two-RBI performance is her first of the season and 11th in her career.

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated April 18, 2013