UTSA splits Saturday twinbill with Seattle
SAN ANTONIO — UTSA defeated Seattle in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader, 2-1, before the Redhawks took a 9-1 run-rule victory in game two for the series win at Roadrunner Field.
Megan Low collected three hits, including a pair of doubles, on the day for the Roadrunners, who moved to 23-21 overall and 6-9 in Western Athletic Conference play. Haylee Staton picked up her 11th win of the season after allowing a run on four hits and registering six strikeouts in the opener.
Meanwhile, Rogin Hardy went 3-fo-3 with three RBIs and Mandy Sugita allowed just three hits to propel the Redhawks (19-24, 8-7) to a win in the nightcap.
Richelle Ashburn and Staton went toe-to-toe in a pitcher’s duel during the opener with neither team scoring until UTSA broke through for a run in the sixth inning.
After hitting Bubba Morrow with a pitch in the first, Staton retired the next 11 batters she faced. The string was broken up by a one-out walk to Lisa Maulden and the Austin native did not allow a hit until Erin Crowley’s infield single two batters later.
Ashburn scattered six hits through the first five innings and kept the game scoreless until the Roadrunners broke through for a run in the sixth.
Low started the panel with an infield single and was lifted for pinch-runner Alexis Ramirez, who moved to second base after a throwing error on Courtney Buchman’s sacrifice bunt attempt. With two runners on, Jolene Graham laid down a sacrifice to put the pair in scoring position.
Pinch hitter Jori Fox lined Ashburn’s 1-0 pitch to right field for a base hit to plate Ramirez and give UTSA a 1-0 lead. The hit also chased Ashburn from the game in favor of Jessica Ulrich, who got a strikeout and grounder to limit the damage.
Staton retired the first two batters in the seventh before Brianna Guerrero took the first pitch that she saw over the wall in left for her second home run of the season.
However, UTSA also came up with a two-out run in the bottom of the panel to walk off with the victory.
The contest appeared to be headed for extra innings until Ulrich walked Tijerina. The Atascosa native moved to second on a wild pitch and touched home on Low’s double off the wall in center.
The hit helped Staton improve to 11-8, while Ulrich dropped to 2-5.
The Redhawks jumped ahead early in game two on Hardy’s solo homer right, but another double by Low helped the Roadrunners tie the score in the bottom of the stanza.
Low moved to third on Buchman’s grounder and would touch home two batters later, when Victoria Birdwell reached on a two-out infield single.
But Seattle would go on to score a run in the fourth, four in the fifth and three in the sixth en route to the run-rule triumph.
Alyssa Vordenbaum took the loss for UTSA and fell to 9-9 after giving up three runs on two hits in four innings, while Sugita improved to 6-9.
The games served as UTSA’s annual Strike Out Cancer event, which raised $1,068 through a silent auction for the San Antonio Leukeumia & Lymphoma Society in honor of former Roadrunner Hope Ortiz.
The Roadrunners will be back in action with a doubleheader at Louisiana Tech (22-22, 7-8) beginning at 5 p.m. in Ruston, La.