Junior shortstop hit her eighth double of the season Friday against No. 19/15 Oregon.
April 13, 2012
SALT LAKE CITY - Five different Utes registered hits, including junior shortstop Kelsi Hoopiiaina's eighth double of the year, but the University of Utah softball lost a 9-0 decision to No. 19/15 Oregon in the opener of their Pac-12 Conference series on Friday at Ute Softball Field.
Hoopiiaina had the Utes' lone extra-base hit of the day with a double in the fifth inning. She is now tied with Holm for second place on the team in doubles with eight this season and has 24 over her career. She is second on the squad with 15 extra-base hits this year and she has 41 over Ute career.
In the circle for the Utes was senior right-hander Generra Nielson, who struck out three and walked four in 6.0 innings. Nielson currently leads the Pac-12 and is fifth in the country with 231 strikeouts this season. The Blanding, Utah native now has 428 strikeouts during her career as a Ute.
In the bottom of the second, Sweet and Clements knocked back-to-back one-out singles through the left side of the Duck defense. Unfortunately, the Ducks were able to get a force out and line out to stop the threat.
In the third frame, Palauni wrapped a one-single to right field for Utah's third hit of the contest and Akins came up with her third hit of the season, a base hit to left field off a 1-2 delivery, in the fourth inning.
Utah continued that momentum into the bottom half of the frame when Hoopiiaina led off with a double off the right-field fence. Palauni and junior Katelyn Elliott both drew walks and the bases were loaded with one out, but the Ducks escaped unharmed after getting the next two Ute hitters to pop up and line out, respectively.
The Utes' impressive defense continued as sophomore center fielder Chalese Fankhauser made a full-extension diving catch for the second out of the sixth inning.
No. 19/15 Oregon improved to 27-9 and 6-5 in Pac-12 play and starter Karissa Hovinga is now 8-3 in pitching decisions this season.
The Utes play the middle game of their series against No. 19/15 Oregon tomorrow at 4 p.m. The play-by-play call of the action as well as live stats will be provided at utahutes.com.