A defensive interference call on UIC allowed freshman Sarah Dowd to score on sophomore Miranda Castiglione's two-out single to center field in the bottom of the seventh inning and lifted the Youngstown State softball team to a 4-3 win over the Flames on Sunday afternoon.
Attempting to score from second on Castiglione's single, Dowd was contacted by UIC pitcher Bridget Boyle, who was attempting to back up home plate, and interference was immediately called by the home plate umpire.
With the win, the Penguins improve to 21-17 overall and 6-4 in the Horizon League while the Flames fall to 10-18 overall and 4-4 in the league.
After two infield pop outs, Dowd and senior Courtney Ewing each drew two-out walks to set the table for Castiglione, who bounced a 2-1 pitch up the middle to score Dowd with the winning run.
UIC tied the game in the top of the seventh inning, 3-3, when Kaleigh Nagle blasted a one-out, two-run home run off of Youngstown State starter Casey Crozier, who had allowed just four hits prior.
After a bloop single loaded the bases with one out, junior Kayla Haslett, who relieved Crozier, induced a force out at the plate and a strikeout to get out of the jam.
The Penguins jumped out in front 2-0 in the bottom of the first inning when senior Sarah Ingalls belted her sixth home run of the year over the left-field wall.
The Flames cut the lead in half with an unearned run in the top of the second inning. From that point until the bottom of the sixth, both Boyle and Crozier cruised.
Ewing led off the bottom of the sixth with a walk, and Castiglione singled to left-center field and advanced on the throw placing runners at second and third with no outs. After Ingalls walked to load the bases, senior Samantha Snodgrass lifted a one-out fly ball to right field to plate Ewing and give the Penguins a 3-1 lead.
Castiglione had two of the Penguins five hits and Crozier, who struck out seven, recorded the 500th strikeout of her career.
The Penguins visit St. Bonaventure, Wednesday, April 16, in a non-league doubleheader at 3 p.m.