UTEP Softball team (5-13) defeated Sacramento State, 6-5, in five innings and fell to UC Riverside, 4-0, earlier in the day.
Nadya Orozco had an excellent outing in the circle, coming in and throwing 4.2 scoreless innings of relief for the Miners. She only allowed two base hits and recorded a strikeout in the effort. Lindsey Sokoloski extended her multi-hit streak to five straight games.
The Miners started out hot with Sokoloski continued her hot hitting streak with a single to center field. Kasey Flores followed with a walk, and Kacey Duffield added a single to load the bases. However, UTEP failed to bring any runs across, stranding the three on base.
The Highlanders would follow up by scoring four runs in the bottom of the first inning to take the early lead over the Miners, 4-0.
After 1.1 innings of work for starting pitcher Kira McKechnie, Nadya Orozco entered the game to relieve her in the circle. Orozco inherited two base runners, but got out of the jam with no runs across and a nasty strikeout to end the second frame.
The Miner bats could not muster up enough hits to get back into striking distance. In the top of the seventh inning UTEP had a chance with the bases loaded and the game-tying run at the plate in Kasey Flores, but the freshman couldn’t continue the rally.
Julia Wright threw 5.0 innings and struck out four batters in relief and recorded the victory over the Hornets. The two offenses went head to head, but UTEP came out on top over the Hornets behind the bats of Sokoloski, Linda Garcia and Bryanna Molina.
Sokoloski once again led off the game with a single, and this time Duffield hit a shot over the right field fence to give the Miners the lead after the first half of the first inning, 2-0.
The Hornets scored three in the bottom of the first frame, claiming the lead, 3-2.
Molina began the top of the second with a stand-up double into left center. Senior Garcia followed up with a single through the right side, scoring Molina to tie the ball game, 3-3. The Miners continued the attack by loading the bases with no outs and the outstanding bat of Sokoloski up to the plate. Sokoloski would walk in a run and then Valles would bring in another on a fielder’s choice to give UTEP a lead of 5-3.
Sacramento State added two runs to tie the game in the bottom of the third inning, 5-5.
Molina singled in the top of the fifth frame, and then was brought home by Garcia with a double down the left field line, 6-5.
Due to a drop-dead time of one hour and 45 minutes, because of UTEP having to catch its flight back home, the game was ended after the completion of five full innings. UTEP was leading at that point, so the Orange and Blue came out on top, 6-5, over the Hornets.
On deck, the Miners will take on Texas Tech in a double header on Tuesday March 5 (1 p.m. & 3:30 p.m. MT) in Lubbock, Texas.