Last night, UCLA Softball took on the Utes in Salt Lake City, Utah, and found themselves down by one run going into the seventh inning. A huge five inning rally in the seventh sealed the win for the Bruins, who improve to 29-2 overall and 5-2 in Pac-12 play.
Senior Selina Ta’amilo started the game, but gave up five uncharacteristic runs (four earned) and eight hits. Freshman Holly Azevedo came in to relieve, and moved to 9-0 on the season, giving up two hits but also pitched three strikeouts in two innings.
UCLA went up 2-0 in the top of the first, with two bunt singles and a key fielding error. A high throw to first by the Utes brought home both Briana and Kylee Perez, and the Bruins found themselves already in the lead.
Utah came roaring back in the second and fourth, with a triple by Kelly Martinez, who scored on an error. The Utes put up three more in the fourth on an RBI double by Alyssa Palacios, an RBI triple from Hailey Hilburn and a squeeze bunt by Abby Robertson to go up 4-2.
In the fifth, Kinsley Washington ran like a track star, rounding the bases on a double, a fly out, and a passed ball. Kylee Perez made it all the way around once again with a homerun, which tied the score at four apiece.
Utah scored one more in the sixth, which made it do or die time for UCLA.
At the bottom of the seventh, Washington singled and was able to score after both Kylee Perez and Briana Perez made it on base. Aaliyah Jordan doubled bringing home Briana Perez, and Kylee came home after a single to center by junior Brianna Tautalafua. Paige Halstead tripled to left-center to drive home Jordan and junior Imani Johnson, who was running for Tautalafua. In dramatic fashion, the Bruins rallied to make the final score 9-5.
Tonight, the Bruins take on the Utes once again at 5:00 PM PT. After last night’s nail biter, I’d expect both teams to be more on point with fielding, since both were able to score on errors. Bats were not a problem last night, so we’ll see if that continues. I’d expect another win for the Bruins, but hopefully it will come a little easier this time.
This is your UCLA vs. Utah softball open thread.