Thunderbird southpaw Justin Neubauer allowed just two runs over five innings to pick up the win and improve his record to 1-1 on the year, while the Sea Warriors' John Albert was knocked around for 10 runs on 11 hits on his way to his first loss of the season.
After scoring 11 runs on 14 hits in the opener, Southern Utah was held to just five singles in the back end of the double header by HPU starter Michael Murray. The junior lefty recorded seven strikeouts over seven innings while tossing a complete game shutout for the Sea Warriors to improve to 3-0 on the year. Senior right-hander Joseph Karlik gave up four runs over four and two-thirds to take his first loss of the season for SUU.
Staton tallied three runs to lead the Thunderbirds on the day while Romero's grand slam helped him post a team-high four RBI. Rezac scored two runs with three RBI after homering twice. Kenolio also had an impressive outing, going 3-for-5 five at the plate with a double while also scoring two runs.
Hawai'i Pacific picked up its first run of the second game on after Derek Nakasato hit a sacrifice fly to center field allowing Lanan Rice-Kashima to score from third. Rylan Morihara added an RBI single in the fourth and the home team then added two more runs in the fifth frame on Thunderbird errors to set the final score at 4-0.
Southern Utah now holds a record of 2-7 after the split while Hawai'i Pacific improves to 11-3.
SOFTBALL: At San Jose, Calif., Southern Utah split results on the diamond on Saturday afternoon, posting a 6-1 victory over Santa Clara, but falling 6-4 to San Jose State in the second game of the day. The results leave the Thunderbirds with an overall record of 9-8 on the year.
SUU took control of game one in the bottom of the fourth, tallying five runs on four hits and two SCU errors. The inning began with a double by Tessa Loewen followed by a single off the bat of Mikkel Griffin. Back-to-back fielding errors by the Broncos loaded the bases and Terysa Dyer delivered with a two-run double to left field. A walk loaded the bases for the second time in the inning and Megan Gurski capitalized by recording a two-run single to cap the Thunderbird scoring in the frame.
An RBI single by Katie Olinger in the bottom of the sixth inning gave the T-Birds a 6-0 lead, but the run was matched by Santa Clara in the top of the seventh on a ground ball with the bases loaded. However, that was all the Broncos would score in the game as a final ground ball wrapped up the game, 6-1, for SUU.
Heather Black earned her third result of the weekend, picking up the win in 6.0 innings where she held the Broncos scoreless on four hits with one walk and three strikeouts. Gurski closed out the game in the circle, throwing the final inning and allowing the one earned run on three hits and one strikeout.
Southern Utah entered the second game of the day against San Jose State having swept the Spartans in a pair of games yesterday. However, SJSU jumped out to an early 3-0 lead after picking up three consecutive hits to begin the game. SUU starter Danielle Axe then settled down and retired 12 consecutive Spartan batters before being replaced in the fifth inning.
Meanwhile, Southern Utah began to chip away at the lead with two runs in the top of the third inning. Loewen and Griffin tallied a pair of clutch, two-out hits and the duo was driven home by Kelsey Bryant on a two-run double a batter later to cut the score to 3-2.
The margin grew to two as SJSU scored a run in the bottom of the fifth on an RBI single that followed a lead-off triple. Southern Utah answered and squared the game at 4-4 with a pair of runs in the top of the sixth on a Dyer two-run home run to right. However, those runs were answered with a pair of runs by San Jose in the home half of the inning as the Spartans made the most of three Thunderbird errors in the frame.
Black, accounting for her four result of the weekend, suffered the loss in the circle after throwing the final inning of relief and allowing the two runs (both unearned) without any hits on two walks and one strikeout.
Southern Utah will wrap up its weekend with a single game against Santa Clara on Sunday morning at 11 a.m.
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