Sophomore Mariah Ramirez and the Utes start Pac-12 Conference play this weekend at Cal.
March 18, 2013
The University of Utah softball team takes on Utah State on Wednesday before beginning its second season of Pac-12 Conference competition this weekend at No. 5/4 California.
The Utes and Aggies face off Wednesday at the LaRee and LeGrand Johnson Field in Logan at 4 p.m. MT. Utah then heads to the Bay Area for the start of Pac-12 play against No. 5/4 Cal at Levine-Fricke Field. The three-game set kicks off Friday at 3 p.m. PT. The middle game will be on Saturday at 1 p.m. PT, followed by the series finale at 12 p.m. PT on Sunday.
All-Tournament Team `Hoop': Utah senior shortstop Kelsi Hoopiiaina (Riverton, Utah) represented Utah on the University of Hawaii's Chevron Spring Fling Tournament All-Tournament Team. Hoopiiaina led the Utes with a .333 batting average in four games. She clubbed five hits in 15 at-bats with two going for extra bases and she was also credited with an RBI.
Ute Pitching Solid in Hawaii: All three of Utah pitcher turned in solid performances last week in Honolulu. In the tournament opener last Wednesday against Syracuse, junior Naomi Amu (Oceanside, Calif.) recorded her third straight complete-game effort as she only gave up one earned run on nine hits, while striking out a career-high of five to keep the Utes in the game, which ultimately turned into a 3-2 defeat.
Amu made the start on the mound for the Utes against No. 19/15 Baylor on Thursday and went 4.2 innings against the Bears. She allowed eight hits and two earned runs, while striking out two BU hitters and walking one.
Freshman right-hander Kayce Nieto (Farmington Hills, Mich.) was impressive in just her second start of the season in the second game last Wednesday against the tournament host, No. 20/23 Hawaii. After getting out of a second-inning jam unscathed, Nieto retired 14 consecutive Rainbow Wahine hitters. All told, Nieto did not allow an earned run on only three hits in 7.1 innings of work to go with a career-high five strikeouts.
Road Utes: The Utes won their first three true road contests this season and sport a 3-1 overall mark this season after falling in a tough eight-inning contest on Wednesday at No. 20/23 Hawaii, 1-0.