EL PASO, Texas – The UTEP softball team was held scoreless until Rylan Dooner shredded a grand slam in the seventh inning to put the Miners on the board, but the team’s last-minute rally was not enough as North Texas closed the game with the 6-4 victory Friday afternoon at Helen of Troy Field. 

UNT took a 6-0 lead over four innings. Tatum Sparks put the Mean Green up on the board in the second inning with a 2-RBI single to right center and was plated shortly after on McKenzie Wagoner’s double. Wagoner would go on to record her first career home run in the fourth inning plating teammates Sparks and Mikayla Smith. 

Another late seventh-inning performance by the Miners shrunk the deficit by four runs. Idalis Mendez hit a leadoff single and back-to-back errors on UNT’s shortstop placed Ajia Richard and Marijn Crouwel on base, respectively, to juice the bases.

With Autumn Scott and Jordyn Lopez pinch running for Mendez and Crouwel, Rylan Dooner stepped up to the plate and on a 1-0 count smacked a dinger over left field for a grand slam. The UNT defense retired the following two batters and Wagoner (UNT) gave up a double to Lexi Morales.

With the tying run at the plate, Sparks (UNT) made the final out to lock in the 6-4 win, clinching the series. 

Game three of the three-game series is set for Saturday, April 8 at 12 p.m. MT. The contest will be streamed on CUSA.tv, with live stats also available.