Photo courtesy UTEP Athletics
The UTEP softball team (6-16, 1-1) shutout the 49ers (8-10, 1-1) in game two of the day 4-0. The Miners fell earlier in the afternoon, 11-6, against Charlotte
Julia Wright pitched a complete-game shutout against the 49ers in game two of the day. Her defense backed her up, turning three double plays to keep Charlotte at bay in a 4-0 victory.
Pamala Baber went yard for the first homer of her junior season in the fifth frame of game two, breaking a 0-0 tie. Then a three-run bomb from Cortney Smith put it completely out of reach for the Charlotte 49ers.
In the first game of the day Senior Kacey Duffield recorded three hits, including her sixth homer of the year and five RBIs. Ariana Valles tallied three hits in game one as well to back up Duffield’s performance.
The Miners fell in their conference opener to Charlotte, 11-6, after the 49ers posted a big sixth inning surge.
UTEP was first to strike in the third frame, when Duffield singled in a run, and then Flores brought one in on a fielder’s choice to give the Miners the early lead at 2-0.
Charlotte would respond with three runs of their own the next half inning to claim to advantage.
Duffield would not let that be the end of the story, blasting her second homer of the week and sixth on the year over the left field fence, taking back the lead, 5-4.
However, Charlotte utilized an explosive sixth inning, scoring six to take the lead and never surrendering it at 11-6.
The Orange and Blue bounced back in front of their home crowd with a complete-game shutout from Julia Wright that boosted the Miners to a 4-0 victory.
The Miners and 49ers were in a pitcher’s dual for the first four innings of play. Julia Wright had only given up four hits and no runs in the 0-0 tie.
Freshman Pate Cathey showed off her glove, igniting a special double play when she dove for a ground ball up the middle, and in one motion flipped to the shortstop who fired the ball over to first base to complete the web gem.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Baber entered the game to pinch hit for the Miners and took one deep, breaking the tie to give UTEP the edge at 1-0.
In the very next inning Valles and Duffield both got on base with singles through the 49er defense, and then the heavy bat of Smith took care of the rest, sending her team-high seventh homer out of the park and giving the Miners all of the breathing they would need to win the game 4-0.
“It was great to finally be home, and in front of our awesome fans. The second game was a great overall game, great defense, great pitching and great hitting.”
>> Kacey Duffield set a season career high in home runs (six)
>> Pamala Baber hit the first homer of her junior season
>> Cortney Smith has a team-high seven dingers
>> UTEP’s defense turned five double plays on the day
Up next, UTEP Softball will play the final game of the series versus Charlotte tomorrow at 12 p.m. MT. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids. For more information about the team day program call the UTEP marketing department at (915) 747-6065.