BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – UTEP softball (8-16, 3-5 C-USA) salvaged the final game of its four-game series versus UAB (16-18, 5-3 C-USA) with a come-from-behind victory, 7-4, in game two of Sunday afternoon’s double-header at Mary Bowers Field. The Miners fell to the Blazers in game one by a score of 5-3.
Game 1: UAB 5, UTEP 3
Junior utility Kasey Flores scored the first run of the game in the top of the second inning with her fourth home run in 10 games. Freshman catcher Karina Somoza tacked on two more runs in the fourth inning after reaching base on an error by the right fielder.
The Blazers responded in the bottom of the fourth inning with a three-RBI double to tie up the game. UAB went on to score a run a piece in the fifth and sixth innings.
Flores finished the game 2-for-2.
Game 2: UTEP 7, UAB 4
Unlike the three prior games in the series, it was the Blazers who jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first inning behind an RBI triple, single and sacrifice fly off freshman pitcher Mackenzee Collins.
Sophomore pitcher Isabella Kelly entered in relief in the second inning and put forth her best outing of the year with five innings of shutout softball, allowing only five hits. Kelly did not allow a run until there were two outs in the seventh inning.
The Miners did all their damage in the top of the fifth inning, compiling seven runs off seven hits. UTEP loaded the bases on a hit to center field by freshman outfielder Ashlynn Allen and two infield hits by sophomore utility Zaylie Calderon and freshman infielder Lexi Morales.
Redshirt sophomore outfielder Idalis Mendez and Flores hit back-to-back smoke and mirror singles through the infield to bring home the Miners’ first runs of the day, 3-2.
Junior infielder Pate Cathey worked a walk to tie up the game, 3-3. Somoza singled to right field to give UTEP its first lead of the game, 4-3, and to load the bases for the sixth-straight batter in freshman outfielder Anna Sample.
Sample – who entered as a pinch hitter – drove in three runs with a bases-clearing double in the left-center gap to give Kelly three more insurance runs. Kelly went on to throw back-to-back shutout innings to tally her third win of the season.
Calderon entered the game with one out to go in the bottom of the seventh and induced a fly out to right field, earning her third save of the year.
NEXT UP FOR THE MINERS
UTEP softball takes on North Texas (16-9, 2-2 C-USA) in its next four-game series from April 16-18. The Miners will be celebrating their three seniors – Bryanna Molina, Macey Brown and Ariana Valles – in the homestand.