Aggie Softball Sweeps Doubleheader Against Minnesota

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The New Mexico State softball team defeated the Minnesota Golden Gophers in both games of a doubleheader, 10-9 and 8-0, Tuesday March 16th. The Aggies improve to 17-9 on the season, while the Gophers fall to 10-19 overall.

"I was really pleased with our offense this afternoon, especially in game one when our pitching was struggling," head coach Kathy Rodolph said. "We showed great determination in a very close game. We are really relying heavily on our offense this season and today they came through for us. Before the game I challenged everyone to just to their job and we came out and played as a close knit team."

The Aggies got on the scoreboard first in the bottom of the first inning in game two. Kylie Randall led off the inning with a bunt single. She then stole second and then advanced to third on a Kandis Jones ground out. Randall then scored the only Aggie run in the inning off a sacrifice fly to center field by Ashley Maroda.

Neither team could score any runs over the next two and half innings. Angie Ortega then stepped to the plate in the bottom of the fourth inning, hitting her sixth home run of the season, giving NM State a 2-0 lead. No runs were scored in the fifth by either team, despite the Aggies having the bases loaded with two outs in the bottom of the inning.

NM State extended their lead to 3-0 in the bottom of the sixth inning. Jennings reached base on a single, then advanced to second on an error and got to third on a sacrifice bunt by Tiffany Autry. Lauren Morizi then singled to right field, scoring Jennings from third base. Teresa Conrad then hit the first pitch she saw over the left field wall, scoring two more runs, giving the Aggies a 5-0 lead with one out.

The Aggies then put runners on first and second before Ashley Maroda crushed a three run home run to center field to end the game, as NM State beat Minnesota in game two, 8-0.

Maroda recorded four RBI off two hits and scored one run, including the game clinching three run home run in the bottom of the sixth inning. Randall tallied two runs on two hits, while Teresa Conrad recorded one run on one hit and two RBI.

Sydney Williard picked up the win for the Aggies, improving to 4-2 on the season. She went six full innings, allowing five hits and striking out four batters.

In game one, the Aggies would score five runs in the final two innings of play to beat Minnesota, 10-9. NM State tallied 17 hits in the game. Angie Ortega scored two runs on two hits, with two RBI in game one. Maroda recorded four hits in the game, scoring once, while Jones had three hits, two RBI and two runs scored.

The winning pitcher was Sarah Byrne, who improves to 1-1 on the season. She pitched one full inning, allowing one hit and no runs for the Aggies. The Golden Gopher’s Lacey Middlebrooks, took the loss, going to 10-8 on the season. She pitched six and a third innings, allowing 10 runs on 17 hits, while striking out three batters.

The Golden Gophers took an early 6-1 lead after two innings, scoring two in the first and four in the second inning. The Aggies would cut the Minnesota lead in half at 6-3 in the bottom of the third inning, score two runs. Ortega would homer in the second at bat of the inning to bring the score to 6-2. The Aggies would put runners on first and second with one out. Clifton the hit a single to center field, scoring Jones from second, bring the score to 6-3 after three innings.

The Aggies scored two more in the bottom of the fourth, as the Golden Gophers held a 6-5 lead after four full innings. With runners on base, the Aggies had two infield singles in the inning, scoring Aggie runners from third base, as Minnesota held a one run lead at 6-5.

Minnesota answered in the top of the fifth inning with two runs of their own, extending their lead to 8-5. NM State would take their first lead of the game with a four-run bottom of the sixth. The Aggies would load the bases, as Jones cracked a single to left field scoring Nohara from third. Autry then doubled down the left field line to score Ortega and Maroda, as Jones advanced to third. Valles then hit a single to left to score Jones, as NM State took a 9-6 lead.

The Golden Gophers would score one in the top of the seventh to tie the game at nine all. In the bottom of the inning, Jennings would lead things off, reaching base on an error. She would advance to second on a ground out by Randall. Nohara would be intentionally walked, putting runs on first and second. Ortega then hit a single up the middle, allowing Jennings to score the winning run. The Aggies took game one 10-9.

The Aggies will be back in action on March 23rd as they travel to El Paso, Texas for a match up with the UTEP Miners. Game time is set for 4:00 p.m.