Softball splits double-header
Utah State softball returned to the home diamond Tuesday against rival Weber State for a doubleheader. The Aggies split the two games, winning the first 6-2, but dropped the second game 8-3.
After the doubleheader, the Aggies are now 16-22 on the season, while Weber State stays at .500 with a 20-20 record.
In the first game, sophomore pitcher Noelle Johnson stole the show with complete game on the mound. She allowed just three hits, struck out seven, and gave up one earned run in seven innings. The win for Johnson brought her record to 15-13 on the season.
After giving up an unearned run in the top of the first inning, Johnson was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to tie the score 1-1. Sophomore outfielder Kirstyn Namba then knocked in two runs with a single up the middle to give USU a 3-1 lead.
Following a run by Weber State in the fourth inning, freshman third baseman Victoria Saucedo drove in a run with a single to center to give the Aggies some breathing room.
Bottom of the fifth inning the Aggies added two more insurance runs to clinch the victory. Junior Nicole Arata had a pinch hit RBI single and junior shortstop Jolen Koons walked with the bases loaded to make the score 6-2.
In the second game, Franny Vaaulu, a junior forward on the USU women’s basketball team made her first start of the season and Aggie softball debut.
"Franny did an outstanding job coming in. She was a big-time recruit coming out of high school, a great athlete who chose basketball. She hadn't really thrown in about three years, and is playing after only three or four days worth of practice. Obviously, she has some rust on her, but you can see some bright moments,” said Utah State head coach Steve Johnson.
The rust was evident, as Vaaulu was knocked around for six hits and six runs in just three innings of work. Freshman Abby Indreland came in for relief and was solid, giving up just two runs in four innings.
Offensively, senior catcher Samantha Larsen tried to keep pace with the Wildcats, as she hit her first career home run, a two-run shot in the second inning. That tied it at 2-2 but the Wildcats took over after that with four runs in the third off Vaaulu.
No. 3 hitter Saucedo chipped in with three hits.
The Aggies travel to San Diego for a conference series against the Aztecs of San Diego State this weekend. The first game is on Thursday, April 17th at 7 p.m.
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