April 8, 2006
Reno, Nev. - After winning two shutouts Friday, the University of Nevada completed a sweep of Utah State in a single game 5-2 victory Saturday at Idlewild Park. The win now marks the third straight for Nevada, who improves to 19-23 overall, 4-2 in WAC play, and has now won seven of the last nine straight home games. Utah State drops to 4-24 overall, 0-5 in the WAC.
After a defensive face-off between the two teams Friday, Saturday's game was turned up as Nevada won tying the total number of runs it had in both games the day before. The Pack won the game, but still didn't take advantage of all its opportunities as it left 10 stranded on base throughout the game. The Aggies' Lindsey Benson took the loss earning three of the five runs, giving up six hits in four innings. By contrast, Nevada sophomore Jordan McPherson (Simi Valley, Calif.) recorded the win with a complete game with five hits and seven strikeouts to improve to 12-13 on the mound this season.
Nevada struck first and often, putting at least one run on the scoreboard in each of the first four innings. After the first four batters hit in the first inning, the Wolf Pack had the bases loaded for senior Candice Rainwater (Dana Hills, Calif.) who hit a sacrifice to right field to RBI fellow senior Cindy Elkins (Reno, Nev.).
It continued in the bottom of the second when the second batter of the inning, senior Lindsey Hall (Avondale, Ariz.), popped a shot over the right-field fence for a solo homerun, her first of the season. Two runs scored in the third inning after Rainwater advanced to third when the Aggies committed two errors on the same play, first at second base and then in right field. The bases were again loaded after senior Kari Stockstill (Huntington Beach, Calif.) walked and freshman Katie Stith (Chino Hills, Calif.) was hit by a pitch. Hall then batted and collect a sacrifice fly to score Rainwater, and then freshman Sarah Hunt (Reno, Nev.) doubled to score Stockstill.
Utah State set up to eliminate the chance of a third shutout when they loaded the bases with its first three batters in the fourth inning. Aubrie Stroman brought in the Aggies' first run of the weekend when she hit a hit a sacrifice infield fly allowing Sara Fleming to score. After giving up another run in the bottom of the fourth and scored again in the top of the fifth with a solo homerun by the leadoff hitter of the inning Amy Schiable. That shot would end the offensive effectiveness of the Aggies as nine of the next 10 straight batters were unable to make it on base.
After sweeping the Aggies, Nevada will face its next WAC opponent, San Jose State. After playing the last eight games at home, the Pack will have to return to the road in San Jose on April 14-15. The Spartans are coming off taking two of three games against Louisiana Tech and are now 15-20, 4-4 WAC.