Northern Colorado Drops Twinbill at Home to Utah Valley State
GREELEY, Colo. - The University of Northern Colorado softball team was swept in a doubleheader on Sunday by the visiting Utah Valley State College Wolverines. UVSC scored a 7-4 victory in eight innings in the opener and then tallied an 8-5 win in game two.
Northern Colorado dropped to 11-26 on the season, while Utah Valley State improved to 13-32-1 on the year. Northern Colorado will close its second season at the Division I level on Monday and Tuesday in a three-game set against UTEP at the UNC Softball Field.
The Bears spotted the Wolverines an early three-run lead and rallied to send the game into extra innings before coming up on the short end of a 7-4 decision.
UNC starting pitcher Monique Obra setted down after a rough beginning to the game. Obra gave up three runs in the first on three hits but overcame an error by shortstop Morgan Dahlman to keep the Bears in the game.
Northern Colorado rallied the bats in the bottom half of the first and tallied a pair of runs. Nicole Martinez drew a leadoff walk and Whitney Platten pushed her to second when she earned a walk. Stephani Miller then loaded the bags when she singled to left field. Mackenzie Barrett plated Martinez with a single left and Platten crossed the plate when UVSC outfielder Shea Seever bobbled the ball while trying to field it.
The Bears tied the score at 3-3 in the second inning on the first collegiate home run of Aubrey Barnes' career.
UVSC jumped back ahead 4-3 in the fourth inning. Jackie Roberts led off with a single and was sacrificed to second by Shyanne Cooper. Emily Cardenas ripped an RBI single to center to plate Roberts.
The Bears were able to knot the score back at 4-4 in the bottom of the sixth inning on an RBI single down the left field line by Ashley Martinosky. Martinosky's hit plated Jennifer Huston, who had led off the inning with a double to right-center.
Neither team was able to score in the seventh inning, so the matchup head to extra innings. The team's used the international tiebreaker in the eighth inning, which places the last batter who made an out in the previous inning on second base to begin the current inning.
UVSC took full advantage of the free baserunner as Rachel Hartgrove advanced to third on a wild pitch and then scored on a squeeze bunt from JaNae Wright. Roberts followed with a two-run home run to left field to give the Wolverines a three-run lead.
In the Bears' bottom half of the eighth Aubrey Barnes' single moved Kati Miller to third and give the Bears a chance with Nicole Martinez serving as the tying run at the plate. But Martinez flew out to right field to end the game and allow UVSC to take a 7-4 victory.
Stephani Miller (4-9) was the hard luck loser as she worked the eighth inning. Obra worked seven innings and gave up nine hits and four runs (two earned runs).
Chelsey Mikalauski (3-11) earned the victory while giving up seven hits and four runs (three earned) as she pitched the complete game.
Utah Valley State jumped out to another three-run advantage before the Bears even had a chance to bat. UVSC then extended the lead to 6-1 in the third inning.
Northern Colorado cut the lead to 6-3 with a two-run rally in the bottom of the fith, but then gave the two runs back just as quickly in the top of the sixth inning.
The Bears gave one final push in the bottom of the sixth by tallying two more runs to cut the lead back to three runs at 8-5. The Bears loaded the bases with two outs but Mackenzie Barrett bounced into a fielder's choice and the Bears could not mount a threat in the seventh.
Jackie Roberts (8-12) got the win for UVSC as she worked 4 1/3 innings and gave up only three runs (two earned). Chelsey Mikalauski earned her first save of the season as she worked the final 2 2/3 innings while striking out one batter.
Stephani Miller (4-10) suffered the loss for the Bears after giving up 10 hits and eight runs (six earned).