Utah softball honors 4 gamers on Senior Day

The Utah softball staff wants yet another win to clinch at the least a .500 season and a berth within the upcoming NCAA Tournament. Coach Amy Hogue hoped the three-game sequence ultimate in opposition to Washington might be the clincher Sunday afternoon.

It was additionally Senior Day for the Utes, however the Huskies had just a few seniors with their very own plans.

Gabbie Plain scattered six hits, and escaped a number of jams, and Baylee Klingler hit a two-run homer, and that was sufficient to provide Washington a 5-1 Pac-12 Conference win in entrance of 1,200 followers at Utah’s Dumke Family Softball Stadium.

The Huskies, now 34-13 general, have already clinched a postseason berth, however got here to Utah trying to enhance their RPI score. Instead, it was the Utes who possible improved from the sequence. With the loss, Utah fell to 26-25 however have three video games scheduled at Oregon State subsequent week. One victory – and even three rainouts – would give Utah a motive to have a good time its first NCAA tourney berth since 2017.

Hogue mentioned the tourney’s choice present is scheduled for May 15, and a profitable report is required to qualify. Not unhealthy contemplating the Utes had been on the backside of the league final yr. 

“It was a big weekend for us and it would have been nice to wrap it up today,” mentioned Hogue. “Still, we took two of three from them and that will help.”

The Utes additionally honored 4 seniors. While there are extra seniors on the roster, it’s nonetheless unsure what number of will return after being given an additional yr of eligibility because of the coronavirus pandemic, which reduce quick the 2019-20 season. 

CC Cook, Shi Smith, Katie Faulk and Madi Jacobus had been the honored gamers throughout a brief ceremony below threatening skies after the sport. Hogue was glad to inform the remaining followers particular person tales about every participant. With every story, it was clear Hogue’s recruiting method might begin together with her in search of a “nice swing,” but additionally consists of intelligence and academic efficiency.

 “We care about their GPA (grade point average) as well as their batting average,” she mentioned. “We’ve found that smart kids and competitiveness usually go hand-in-hand.”

The Utes wanted each Sunday. Starting in sunny, heat climate, Washington took an early lead, however then Halle Morris hit a solo dwelling run to tie the sport. Klingler, the Pac-12’s hitting and residential run chief, then smacked a two-run shot over the left area fence within the fifth.

The Utes threatened within the backside of each inning afterward, however Plain survived, giving a particular due to her left fielder, Sami Reynolds, one other senior who made good performs on 5 fly balls that would have gone for further bases every time.

“That’s the way the game goes,” Hogue mentioned. “Some days, those balls drop. We’ve really ‘turned’ on the ball well the last few days. I’m really happy the way we’ve played.”

Four years in the past, Plain threw an ideal sport in opposition to the Utes, however Utah opened this sequence with a 5-2 win Friday with Plain on the mound. This time, she acquired sufficient assist to safe her seventeenth win (one-half of Washington’s complete). Plain walked two and struck out 5. She additionally made a pleasant defensive play on Sophie Jacquez’s hit up the center with runners on first and second base and two outs within the sixth.

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