• June 26, 2022
 Smith Homers on Sunday; Miners Fall to UC Davis, San Jose State

File photo by Andres ‘Ace’ Acosta – Chief Photographer – El Paso Herald Post

Smith Homers on Sunday; Miners Fall to UC Davis, San Jose State

TEMPE, Az. – UTEP completed opening weekend at the Kajikawa Classic on Sunday. The Miners (1-4) came up short against UC Davis in the early game, 12-4 [6], and then fell to San Jose State, 11-0 [5] at the Tempe Sports Complex.

UTEP 4, UCD 12 [6]
The Aggies (2-2) took an early 3-0 advantage after two innings before Courtney Clayton and Cortney Smith gave their squad a 4-3 lead in the fifth inning.

Pinch hitter junior Ariel Blair reached second base to lead off the fifth frame after a throwing error by UC Davis pitcher Katie Kibby. Senior Kaitlin Ryder followed with an infield popup, but third baseman Ashley Lotoszynski called for the ball and missed the catch for the Aggies’ second consecutive error.

Clayton then delivered on a 1-2 pitch to record an RBI single through the right side that plated Blair. Smith then followed with a three-run bomb over center on a 0-1 toss, giving the Miners a 4-3 lead.

Starting hurler Julia Wright got into trouble the first two innings, allowing a trio of runs and then settled in the next three frames.

But Wright allowed back-to-back single to open the sixth inning. After sophomore Devyn Cretz was inserted into the circle for Wright, the Aggies went on to score nine runs on nine hits, including a grand slam by Isabella Leon.

Smith finished 2-for-2 with three RBI and a run, while Clayton and sophomore Pamala Baber each recorded singles.

UTEP 0, SJSU 11 [5]
The Spartans (4-1) scored three runs in each of the first two innings to take a 6-0 lead, and would score another in the third and four in the fourth to take down the Miners in the second contest of the afternoon.

UTEP recorded five hits as junior Mariah Ellis, senior Taylor Sargent, and freshman Ilena Santos each singled in the second inning, while freshman Ariana Valles and Clayton each registered singles in the third frame.

Junior Kira McKechnie made her second collegiate start against San Jose State on Sunday after defeating Saint Mary’s College on Saturday.

Up next, UTEP will play at the Marucci Desert Classic hosted by UNLV (Feb. 16-18). The Miners will take on Nevada (12:15 p.m. MT) and Boise State (2:30 p.m.) on Friday, Feb. 16, then New Mexico (10 a.m.) and host UNLV (4:45 p.m.) on Saturday and will conclude the weekend on Sunday against South Dakota (10 a.m.)

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