Carpetowne pitcher Rich Connolly prevented a New Zealand sweep of the top three local fastpitch softball teams. Thursday night at the Cottonwood Complex, Connolly tossed a two-hitter and struck out the side in the seventh inning for a 1-0 exhibition victory.

The New Zealand national team had taken a 3-1 win over Page Brake Wednesday and downed Miller Toyota 4-1 earlier Thursday, scoring all four runs with a two-out rally in the second inning.In the Carpetowne-New Zealand game, Connolly and the Kiwis' Michael White both struck out 12 and allowed two hits. Carpetowne's fourth-inning run was unearned, as Nate Ellington singled, stole second, advanced to third on a grond out and scored on an error on Connolly's ground ball.

The 1988 International Pioneer Days tournament officially starts tonight, with all three local teams opening play in the round-robin event. Miller Toyota faces Canadian national champ Rempel Bros. at 7 p.m., and Page Brake plays New Zealand and Carpetowne meets Pay N' Pak of Seattle at 9 p.m.

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In ceremonies Saturday night, 13 men and women will be inducted into the Utah Softball Hall of Fame. Women's fastpitch: Rachel Kezerian and Jerry Smith, Salt Lake City; Elva Rupp Rushton, West Valley City; Virginia Frances, Tooele; Barbara Gardner Avondet, Ogden; and Ida Rupp Stephens, Layton. Men's fastpitch: Robert E. Thayer, Salt Lake City; Jerry Hogge, Clinton; George Brown, Ogden; Lex Baer, Providence; Darwin Larsen, Logan; and the late Truman Little. Sponsor - the late Rubin Herman.

- Kurt Kragthorpe