College sports roundup: Arizona Wildcats stifle Utah Ute rally

Deseret News

Published: Saturday, April 7 2012 10:00 p.m. MDT

Utah (23-12, 0-6 Pac-12) had three players with multi-hit days as junior shortstop Kelsi Hoopiiaina and senior third baseman Whitney Holm both turned in two hits apiece, while Holm was credited with her 32nd RBI of the season. Hoopiiana went a perfect 2-for-2 in stolen base attempts and also drew two walks to post a team-high .667 on-base percentage in the doubleheader.

In the circle, senior right-hander Generra Nielson was pinned with the loss in both contests and fell to 17-9 in pitching decisions this year. Nielson threw 62/3 innings against the Golden Bears, striking out six Cal hitters.

BYU 0-7, HAWAII 1-3: At Provo, despite record attendance (1,953 fans) and superb pitching from junior Hannah Howell, BYU (24-11, 4-3 WAC) was unable to gain a run in the first game.

Any other day, Howell's two-hit, five-strikeout performance would have been enough for a win, but Hawai'i pitcher Stephanie Ricketts held BYU just to one hit.

After two consecutive walks drawn by Hawai'i in the top of the sixth, a deep hit to center field was caught but advanced runners to second and third. A walk loaded the bases and a short grounder back to the pitcher permitted the Rainbow Wahine runner on third to make it home and put the game's only run on the board.

BYU's Delany Willard singled to center field in the bottom of the fourth for BYU's lone hit of the game, but was put out in an attempt to steal second to end the inning.

In Game 2, BYU came out with a vengeance, scoring six runs in the bottom of the first inning. Hawai'i had previously given up a season-high four runs in two other games this season before the Cougar bats came alive.

The Cougars hit the holes they couldn't find in the first game, racking up singles and sending around six runners on Hawai'i pitcher Kaia Parnaby, who had a 0.74 ERA and 12-1 record in 13 appearances coming into the game.

Senior Jessica Dugas went 2 for 2 in the first inning alone, starting things off for the Cougars with a single. After a walk and a successful double steal, sophomore and Hawai'i native Katie Manuma laced a hit to right field, scoring Dugas and JC Clayton.

Ashlee Brawley, Anna Hudson and Dugas each added an RBI single in the inning while Carly Duckworth brought in another on a fielder's choice to give BYU starter Tori Almond plenty of room going into the second inning.

Almond (8-2) struck out seven and allowed just one earned run.

"If we keep playing how we did in that second game, we're on the right track," Eakin said.

In the top of the sixth, Hawai'i's Jessica Iwata's homer to left field brought in teammate Tara Anguiano to finish out the scoring.

Up next for the Cougars is a game at Idaho State on Monday at 4 p.m. in the first of a five-game week for BYU, including a home game Wednesday against Utah Valley and a three-game series beginning Friday.

FRESNO STATE 8-5, UTAH STATE 0-2: At Fresno, Calif., the Bulldogs (27-15, 7-1 WAC) broke the first game open in the bottom of the second inning, scoring eight runs on six hits.

Utah State (11-25, 2-7 WAC) looked to rally in the top of the fourth as sophomore outfielder Kassandra Uchida delivered a lead-off bloop single, giving USU its first base runner for the day. Senior infielder Kelley Kaneshiro got on base after being hit by a pitch, her 11th of the season, moving a runner into scoring position, but the Aggies could not convert.

Utah State starting pitcher senior Dani Chaplin (2-4) was charged with the loss, while Fresno State's starting pitcher Michelle Moses picks up her 16th win of the season, improving to 16-10 overall. Junior pitcher Mandy Harmon entered the game with one out in the second and allowed only one run in 22/3 innings of work.

In the final game, Fresno State once again took an early lead, plating a run in the bottom of the first inning.

Kaneshiro looked to respond in the top of the second, delivering a lead-off single, but the Bulldogs handled the threat.

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