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Las Cruces, NM — The New Mexico State softball team fell to Utah Valley, 4-1, in the Aggies’ first game of the 2014 WAC Softball Tournament. NM State will now play the winner of the Seattle U/Bakersfield at 5:30 p.m. (MT). NM State moves to 29-22 on the season.
The Aggies managed just three hits in the game, scoring one run, leaving six runners on base. Staci Rodriguez, Finau Fiana and Lacey Rother all recorded a hit in the game, with Rother collecting an RBI and Rodriguez tallying the run.
Celisha Walker took the loss for the Aggies, pitching five innings, allowing three runs on seven hits, while striking out three batters.
Utah Valley started the game with a quick 1-0 lead after the bottom of the first inning. The Aggies were unable to push runs across the plate in the bottom of the inning, trailing 1-0 after one. NM State’s defense shut the Utah Valley batter’s down in the top of the second, giving up just one hit and no runs. The Wolverines continued to lead the Aggies 1-0 after one and a half innings.
With two outs in the bottom of the second, Malena Padilla walked then advanced to second on a pass ball. Alyssa Ruiz the struck out to end the bottom half of the second, stranding Padilla at second, as Utah Valley continued to lead 1-0 going into the third.
Makalya McAdams, who started the game for NM State, saw just one batter in the top of the third and was replaced by Walker. McAdams pitched two innings, allowing two run on three hits and striking out one batter. Utah Valley would add one more run in the inning off a home run to left, pushing their lead to 2-0.
In the top of the fourth, Utah Valley quickly loaded the bases with no outs. The Wolverines then hit into a 1-2-3 double play, followed by a fly out to center field, ending the inning and the threat, as NM State continued to trail, 2-0.
Finau got the Aggies’ first hit of the game with a single to left in the bottom of the fourth. Dohrwardt then pinch ran for Finau and would advance all the way to third after a fielder’s choice and a wild pitch. Dodd then walked to put runners at the corners with two outs. Padilla then grounded out to end the inning. Utah Valley continued to lead 2-0.
The Aggies again found themselves in trouble in the top of the fifth with two runners on and no outs, before Walker struck out the third batter of the inning and forced two line outs to end the inning with no runs scored, still trailing 2-0.
Utah Valley added two more runs in the top of the sixth on a sac fly and a single, giving the Wolverines a 4-0 lead.
NM State got on the board in the bottom of the six with one run. Rodriguez started the inning with a double to center field and was pushed across for the score by Rother, who singled to left field. The Aggies couldn’t push anymore runs across the plate, continuing to trail, 4-1, going into the top of the seventh inning.
Walker forced a ground out, a strike out and a line out in the top of the seventh to take down UVU 1-2-3, trailing 4-1 going into the final half inning of the game.
Padilla drew a walk to start the inning for the Aggies but three straight outs ended the game, as UVU won 4-1 over the Aggies.
The Aggies will now play a 5:30 p.m. against the winner of Seattle U and Bakersfield.
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