Henderson Homers to Help SUU Earn Split at Utah Valley
OREM, Utah, April 23 – Senior infielder Kadi Henderson hit a two-run homer in the eighth inning to lift Southern Utah (19-24, 9-2 Big Sky) to a 7-3 win in the second game of its doubleheader with Utah Valley (14-34) on Wednesday. The Wolverines held on to claim the opener by a score of 5-3.
“Kadi had a huge hit,” stated SUU head coach Kyle Magnusson. “She was getting pitched outside all day and rolling over on balls, but finally when she needed to she put the ball into right field and just smashed one.”
UVU claimed the first lead of the day on a solo shot from Dara Rahm in the opening inning. Therysa Dyer lined a two-out RBI double into the gap in left center to even things up for SUU in the top of the second, but Utah Valley went back in front on a home run by Brianna Gaitlin.
The Thunderbirds plated a pair of runs in the top of the third to claim the advantage after Kylee Wolf and Madison Resley each recorded an RBI single. UVU knotted the score at 3-3 in the bottom half of the inning with a third solo home run as Erin Romero went deep for the home team.
The Wolverines went ahead by two in the fifth inning after getting a fourth home run from Hailey Kofler. The T-Birds loaded up the bases in the seventh, but were unable to get any runs across as they fell by a count of 5-3.
Freshman Jordan Theurer (5-9) took the loss after allowing two scores in 2.1 innings of relief while Bailey Moore (2-10) went six innings and gave up two earned runs to earn the win for UVU.
Resley put the Thunderbirds up early in the second contest with a hard-hit infield single that scored Wolf from third in the opening frame. Resley added to the margin with another RBI in the third and Sara Park scored on an error to set the count at 3-0.
The Wolverines got on the board with a sacrifice fly from Debra Lovell in the bottom of the third and sent the game into extra innings after tying the game at 3-3 on a two-run homer by Megan Peay in the seventh.
SUU retook control in the top of the eighth after Henderson sent a deep shot over the wall in right center. Theurer added a run on an error and Park walked in a run as the Thunderbirds pulled away for the 7-3 win.
Ariel Zimmerman (8-7) rang up five batters while allowing three runs on five hits in a seven inning start for the T-Birds before Ashley Ostler came on to record to the final three outs. Josi Summers (7-15) tossed three scoreless innings of relief before giving up four runs in the eighth to be charged with loss.
Resley recorded three RBI on four hits for the day with Kelli Hales turning in a pair of singles along with two runs for Southern Utah. Henderson’s go-ahead home run was her seventh of the season, tying her for the team lead with Resley. Rahm posted four hits, including a double and home run for the home team.
“Madi had a good day, Ashley came in and pitched well in both games and Ariel did well,” commented Magnusson.
SUU will look to hold on to the top spot in Big Sky standings this weekend when it returns to conference play with a visit to Idaho State. The series between the Thunderbirds and Bengals is scheduled begin with a doubleheader on Saturday at 1:00 p.m.