The first road trip for the University of Utah softball team ended in disappointment as the team fell in three games to the No. 16 Arizona State Sun Devils.
The series sweep moves Utah’s record to 13-17 overall and 2-5 in Pac-12 play after two conference series.
The Utes headed into this weekend with an opening weekend series win against UC Berkeley. The team came out of the series with two wins.
Game one in Tempe was the worst showing of the weekend for Utah. The game ended in five innings, and the Utes were shutout 13-0, giving up 11 walks and 11 hits.
Freshman Ellessa Bonstrom was the only Ute to record a hit on the day, hitting a double.
The second game of the series was a five-inning mercy rule as well, but the Utes were able to put up runs in their 14-4 loss to ASU.
Some timely hits from the Utes were no match for the Sun Devil’s five home runs in Saturday’s game. Utah’s six hits were more than doubled by ASU’s 15 in the short game.
Utah scored their first runs of the weekend in their half of the fifth inning. Sophomore Julia Noskin started off the rally with a single, and BreOnna Castaneda came in behind her with a double. Bonstrom loaded the bases with a walk and Alyssa Barrera came up with an RBI ground ball.
Two more runs came in, thanks to a double from Hailey Hilburn, and Ally Dickman completed the scoring for Utah.
Sunday brought game three and an exciting but disappointing end to the weekend. Utah put 18 hits and 17 runs on the board, but they were still unable to come away with the win.
ASU rallied in the seventh inning and scored nine runs, giving them an 18-17 victory. Those 17 runs were the most that the Utes have scored since joining the Pac-12, and the most since their 2006 game against UNLV.
Utah started off the game hot with an early home run from Dickman that scored two runs. Utah extended their lead by one more run in the top of the third and led the Sun Devils 3-0.
ASU came back strong in their half of the second and scored five runs off of two home runs by the Kindra and Maddi Hackbarth. Utah answered right back and scored 10 runs in the next three innings.
Bonstrom started off in the third inning with the fourth home run of her freshman season. A two-run double from Makayla Hurst gave the lead back to the Utes.
Utah loaded up the bases shortly after that, as Dickman came through with a crucial two-run single to further extend the teams lead.
Three hits in a row from Utah set the ball rolling for Utah in the fifth, and they scored three more runs for a 13-5 lead.
Utah tacked on three home runs, one from Abby Robertson (her first at the college level) one from Castaneda (her third of the season) and one from Katie Faulk. These hits put Utah up 17-9 heading into the bottom half of the seventh inning.
The defense was key in this game, and although the Utes had a strong lead, ASU found a way around it and they knocked in nine runs in the final frame of the game to walk away with the win.
Throughout the weekend, the Utah pitchers were knocked around and they gave up 45 total runs. 12 home runs were given up in the series as well.
Dickman had a stand out weekend at the plate and her average for the series was a team-high .455.
The Utes will next travel in-state to Ogden, Utah on Wednesday, March 27 for a non-conference game where they will face Weber State.
Last year, the Utes won a double-header against the Wildcats in a series where they scored 12 runs and allowed only two to their opponents.
Coming up this weekend, No. 2 Oklahoma will make an appearance in Salt Lake City on both Saturday and Sunday at Dumke Family Softball Complex.