SUU Strategic Communications

Southern Utah Splits Two at Red Desert Classic

February 09, 2013
By SUU Strategic Communication
ST. GEORGE, Utah, Feb. 9 – Southern Utah (1-4) softball closed out its season-opening showing at the Red Desert Classic with a 4-1 victory over Utah State (0-4) after dropping the first game of the day to Seattle (2-1) by a score of 6-4. Danielle Axe (1-1) went the distance for the T-Birds without allowing an earned run to pick up her first win of the year while also delivering SUU its first triumph of the young season.

The Thunderbirds fell behind early against Seattle as the Redhawks plated four runs in the second inning and then added two more to open up a 6-0 advantage. A pair of doubles from Isabella Geronimo and Sarah Petosa provided the early runs, and Lisa Maulden and Jenny Hurst drove in two more in the third and fourth innings to put SU out in front.

Southern Utah started a rally with four runs in the fifth frame after freshman Kylee Wolf got things started with an RBI double down the left field line and later came around to score as Katie Olinger reached base on an error. Kelsey Bryant then drove a deep shot over the left field wall for her first homerun of the year to bring her team back within two.

That would be all the runs the Thunderbirds would be able to muster however as SUU stranded two runners in both the sixth and seventh innings to come out on the losing end of a 6-4 score. Ariel Zimmerman (0-3) took the loss after giving up five runs while striking out seven in just over five innings of work. Richelle Asburn (1-0) picked up the win for the Redhawks, allowing just one earned run and striking out four.

It was Southern Utah who was the first to take the advantage in the second game of the day as Megan Neilson drove in a run with an RBI double down the left field line and then scored on a base hit by Kelli Hales to make tally 2-0. The Thunderbirds gave back a run in the following inning but shut out the Aggies in the final four frames to win by a final margin of 4-1. Bryant chipped in her third RBI of the day in the fifth and scored from third on a wild pitch in the final inning to give SUU its last two runs of the game.

Axe spread out six hits, three walks and two strikeouts to record the win while Utah State’s Mandy Harmon (0-2) took the loss after giving up three runs on eight hits and striking out four.

The Thunderbirds are back in tournament play next week with a trip scheduled to the Hillenbrand Invitational in Tucson, Ariz. where they will face Nebraska, Utah State, No. 14 Arizona, Purdue and Drake. SUU starts things off against the Cornhuskers on Friday at 9:00 a.m. Coverage of the games is available at