UVU softball: Wolverines host Santa Clara in final home PCSC series
OREM, Utah — Utah Valley University will play its final home Pacific Coast Softball Conference series this weekend when it hosts Santa Clara University for a pair of doubleheaders Saturday and Sunday. Both days' games begin at 12 p.m. at Wolverine Field.
Sunday is Senior Day, as the careers of five Wolverine seniors will be honored. Outfielders Charlee Cisneros, Marie Williams and Kylee Brinkerhoff will be recognized alongside shortstop Krystin Jachim and pitcher Tiffany Mills. The Senior Day festivities will precede Sunday's first game at 12 p.m.
Last weekend, UVU (27-17, 9-7 PCSC) battled San Diego to a 2-2 series split out in Southern California. The Wolverines claimed games two and four of the series, grabbing each win by a one-run margin. Pitcher Josi Summers was the difference in game two, pitching seven scoreless innings while allowing just two hits as UVU prevailed 1-0. In game four, Brinkerhoff went 2-for-3 with an RBI in leading the Wolverines to a 4-3 victory.
After going just 2-for-12 last weekend, Jachim's team-leading batting average dipped to .391 — still good for second in the PCSC. She also paces the squad in doubles with 11 and runs batted in with 28. From there, Amanda Robinson holds a .370 average to go along with 24 RBIs and a team-high five home runs. Brinkerhoff is hitting .313 on the season while true freshman Dynasty Lauvai has posted 22 RBIs.
Mills and her 1.96 ERA lead the Wolverine pitching staff. With a record of 13-11, Mills has also notched five saves — good for sixth in the NCAA. Fellow starter Summers is 9-6 with a 2.51 ERA.
Heading into the weekend, Utah Valley sits three games back of first-place BYU and a single game behind second-place Loyola Marymount with eight contests still to go.
Including its sweep at the hands of BYU last weekend, Santa Clara (6-39, 3-13 PCSC) has lost 13 of its last 14 ballgames and nine in a row. Junior outfielder Stephanie Fisher is tops for the Broncos in nearly every major statistical category. She is first in average (.349), hits (44), doubles (10), triples (2), RBIs (13) and home runs (3). Freshman infielder Cassandra Padilla follows, batting at a .300 clip to go along with eight RBIs.
In the circle, Carissa Theis, one of three seniors on the team, has the most starts on the year for SCU, owning a 3-13 record alongside a 3.98 ERA. Freshman Ciara Gonzales is 1-11 in 12 starts.
The two squads have met just once before, squaring off in a pair of games at the Husky Invite in Seattle in February of 2006. UVU took game one 4-1 before falling 2-0 in the rematch.
Next up on the schedule, Utah Valley takes a three-game break from conference play with a pair of Big Sky opponents. The Wolverines host a doubleheader with Weber State on Tuesday, April 30, then head to Pocatello, Idaho, the next day for a meeting with Idaho State. UVU will wrap up the PCSC season with a four-game set at Loyola Marymount beginning May 4.
Kellen Hiser is sports information assistant at Utah Valley University. For more information on Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.