Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
The Daily Lobo The Independent Voice of UNM since 1895
Latest Issue
Read our print edition on Issuu

Softball ends series on high note

Keene's home run saves Lobos from being swept at home during the weekend

As UNM rightfielder Krissy Keene rounded the bases after putting her team in the lead with a late-inning home run Saturday, she let out a big smile as her teammates jumped up and down, waiting for her to cross home plate.

Keene's dramatic home run and a stellar defensive effort by the UNM softball team helped it win the second game of a doubleheader against Brigham Young University 4-3 to salvage a split, after losing game one 4-1 at Lobo Field.

The win also prevented the Lobos (28-15-1 overall, 1-2-1 in Mountain West Conference) from going winless during its conference-opening weekend series against The University of Utah and BYU. UNM finished 1-2-1 in weekend games after losing to and tying Utah in a doubleheader Friday.

Tied at three in the bottom of the sixth, Keene, a senior, came up to bat with two outs in the inning. She cracked the Cougars' Maryon DeWitt-Wallentine's first pitch over the left field fence to put her team on top 4-3. The Cougars put a baserunner at second base in the top of the seventh but could not convert.

"I was looking for her to pitch inside because she had been pitching inside, belt-high all day," Keene said. "I saw that it was in there, and I just went all out to hit it. I was not trying to hit a home run, it just happened, but I was expecting it. It's nice to get the game-winning hit."

Keene was the hitting star, going two-for-three from the plate. Her teammates also helped, as designated hitter senior Kathy Moore went one-for-three with two runs scored and junior second baseman Brooke Chaffee hit one-of-two with one RBI.

UNM freshman pitcher Amy Dumas recovered from losing the first game to pitch one-and-a-third shutout innings to improve her record to 13-3. BYU's DeWitt-Wallentine (9-10) took the loss, allowing two runs in three-and-a-third innings.

The Lobos got on the board first, scoring a run in the second inning on two hits. Sophomore centerfielder Kelly Glass started things off with an infield single. She stole second, advanced to third on a fielder's choice and scored on a double to center field by junior catcher Tiffani Chambers.

After BYU (19-16, 2-1 MWC) tied the game in the top of the third inning on a pair of singles, the Lobos scored a run in the third and fifth innings.

In the third, UNM loaded the bases with two outs on two walks and a single. Chaffee followed with a big hit, singling to left field to score a run.

The Lobos were helped in the fifth when DeWitt-Wallentine had control problems. The Lobos loaded the bases on two walks and an error before pinch-hitter Rachel Wennekamp walked to score a run.

The Lobo defense played well behind freshman starting pitcher Hayley Punter. She got into trouble several times, but the defense came up big time and again. The outfielders made numerous running catches and the infielders snared several hard-hit grounders.

Enjoy what you're reading?
Get content from The Daily Lobo delivered to your inbox

The defense was especially solid in the fourth inning. With runners on second and third with no outs for the Cougars, Chaffee was well positioned and grabbed two hard-hit liners. Then Keene made a running catch of a pop up just outside the infield dirt to end the inning.

"We got a combination of everything to pull out the win," UNM head coach Susan Craig said. "We got timely hitting, we got good pitching and we played good defense."

Even with the defense playing well, it could not prevent two runs by the Cougars in the top of the sixth to tie the score at 3.

After Punter gave up two walks to begin the inning, BYU's Mindy Hanson hit a long fly ball to left field that looked to be going over the fence. However, junior left fielder Cayley Warner timed her jump perfectly, reaching over the fence to rob Hanson of a homerun. BYU would recover, though, as Kari Pringle doubled down the third-base line to score two runs for the Cougars.

"Finishing the weekend on a positive note is a big lift for us," Craig said. "We have a young team and this gives them some confidence."

In game one, DeWitt-Wallentine baffled the Lobo hitters and BYU hit Dumas hard in recording a 4-1 victory. UNM could only muster one run off of the Cougar pitcher as DeWitt-Wallentine kept the Lobos off balance with a variety of pitches in pitching a complete game. She allowed seven hits and struck out seven Lobo batters.

In contrast, the Cougar hitters had a beat on Dumas and hit several long fly balls, including two home runs.

The loss was the first for Dumas since taking a 3-0 defeat Feb. 25 against the University of Nebraska, a string of 11 straight appearances, all wins.

"I had some difficulties getting in my groove," Dumas said. "I had trouble with some technical stuff that I have to work out."

She pitched five-and-a-third innings, giving up eight hits and allowing four runs - three earned - in the defeat.

The Lobos would stake Dumas to an early lead as they scored their only run in the first inning. Lead-off hitter senior shortstop Marianna Fenelli started things off with a walk. She then stole second base and was driven home when Keene hit a double to left field. That was the only run the Lobos would get in the game. DeWitt-Wallentine shut the door on the Lobos and allowed her team to get some runs.

Glass was the only Lobo to have success against the Cougar pitcher, as she had a perfect three-for-three hitting game.

In Friday's doubleheader action, the Lobos lost game one against Utah 14-5 and the two teams finished tied at 5 in the second game after nine innings.

In the first game, the Lobos lead early, going up 3-0 on a first inning three-run home run. The lead would last for a couple of innings before the Utes exploded for 13 runs in the last two innings, thanks to poor pitching and four errors by the defense. Moore (7-8) took over for Dumas and proceeded to give up 11 runs, five earned, in one-and-two-thirds innings.

In the second game, the Lobos rallied from a 5-3 deficit to score two runs in the bottom of the eighth to tie the score and the game ended after nine innings. Punter pitched all nine innings for the Lobos.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Daily Lobo