While the Utes had to withstand a five-run inning comeback from the California Bears in game one, the Utes put on a clinic in game two of the series to secure a pair of weekend wins.
The No. 15 University of Utah softball team clinched a 7-6 win on Friday, and they took care of business against Bears on Saturday en route to a 12-2 victory. The series finale was cancelled due to weather.
Utah had a slow start to the series in the first game as it struggled to get any runs on the Bears in the first inning, but it kept the Bears from getting to bases as well. In the second, Ally Dickman advanced to second, and Ryley Ball came in as the pinch runner. Soon after that, Kay Kay Fronda tripled to left field and Ball ran home. Fronda followed in suit after a wild pitch from the Bears, and the Utes took a 2-0 lead.
The Utes extended their lead over the Bears in the fourth inning when Hannah Flippen singled to the right field which Delilah Pacheco, who was already out on bases, to run home. Following behind Pacheco was Alyssa Barrera, Anissa Urtez and Aubrey Peterson. The Bears got one run in the bottom of the fourth to make it a 6-1 game.
After not allowing Utah any runs in the top of the fifth, Cal scored five times to tie the game, 6-6. Utah, however, wouldn’t let the tied game last for long as Flippen scored following a double from Heather Bowen, the final run of the game, to give the Utes a 7-6 victory.
In the second and final game of the series, the Utes never gave the Bears a chance to compete and hit four home runs. Second up to bat in the first inning, Barrera scored first when she homered to right center. By the end of the first inning, Utah was up 2-0.
“We came out and we were ready to play,” Kelly Martinez said. “We wanted to play even though it was raining, and we took advantage of the other team not wanting to play in the rain.”
Barrera scored another run for her team after Flippen homered to the center field, and she gave the Utes a three-run lead going into the fourth inning. Martinez homered to left field in the sixth inning.
Martinez sealed the victory in the seventh inning when she scored a walk off grand slam. As the bases were loaded, Martinez homered the ball for the second time to center field, allowing Hailey Hilburn, Fronda and Bridget Castro to score, bringing the game to an end as Utah won 12-2.
“Today was fun,” said head coach Amy Hogue. “[The weather] ended up being beautiful, and I think that just put us in the mood to go play great because we really did. We hit the ball great. We were really deep with our pitching and hitting enough scores to win these games, and I couldn’t be more proud.”
Up next for the Utes, they will stay at home for another three-game series as they take on Arizona starting this Thursday, April 13.