Thunderbirds Rout Seahawks In Second Day of Beehive Classic
By SUU Strategic Communication
CEDAR CITY, Utah - Coming off of a tough loss to Utah State Thursday afternoon, the Thunderbird softball team bounced back in stellar fashion Friday with a 10-4 win over Wagner College.
“I thought today was a great team effort. We hit the ball much, much better than yesterday,” head coach Tom Gray said after the win. “We got a real journeyman type performance out of Kirsten. She battled the whole way and I thought we played some really good defense. Overall a really good team effort.”
After collecting just three hits against the Aggies, the Thunderbird offense exploded for a season-high 17 hits against the Seahawks. Six Thunderbirds had multiple-hit performances including two three-hit outings from seniors Payton Hart and Karlee Manzione.
The middle innings are where the T-Birds did most of their damage. With the game tied at one run apiece, back-to-back doubles from Kendall Kapitzke and Manzione sparked a three run, four hit third inning to put the Thunderbirds up 4-1. The Seahawks answered back in the following half inning when Kaila Smith hit a two-run home run over the fence in right center to cut the T-Bird lead to just one run.
Unsatisfied with the one run lead, the Thunderbirds opened the bottom of the fourth with back-to-back-to-back singles from Nicole Simonson, Sarah Murphy, and Hart, bringing Kapitzke to the plate with the bases loaded and nobody out. The shortstop took the first pitch she saw from McKaleigh Goodale and blasted it over the fence in left center for her fourth home run and the team’s first grand slam of the season.
The Thunderbirds would go on to score two more runs in that fourth inning, pushing the inning total to six and opening up a 10-3 lead over the Seahawks. Wagner would pick up another run in the sixth inning, but would ultimately fall to the Thunderbirds 10-4.
Hostetler stayed in the circle the entire game for the Thunderbirds, picking up her second complete game and second win of the season. She allowed ten hits, four runs, and walked just one in her seven innings of work.
The Beehive Classic will continue tomorrow morning as the Seahawks kick things off against Bradley University at 10:00 a.m. The Thunderbirds will continue play at 3:00 p.m. with their first matchup against Bradley on the weekend.
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