NMSU Softball Sweeps Doubleheader At UMKC, Sweeps WAC Series

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

KANSAS CITY, MO - The New Mexico State softball team continued Western Athletic Conference play on Saturday with a doubleheader against Kansas City at the Urban Youth Academy. The Aggies completed the series sweep by taking down the Roos 7-2 and 7-3.

“It’s great to get a sweep to open conference play,” head coach Kathy Rodolph said. “We had some strong contributions in the circle and many timely hits when we needed them.”

After a scoreless inning for both teams, NM State (18-14) drew first blood in the second after Victoria Castro and Sarai Mejia reached on a pair of singles. In her first collegiate at bat, Analise De La Roca hit a booming double to right center to score the runners and give the Aggies the 2-0 advantage.

In the following inning, Fahren Glackin started a rally after being hit by a pitch and Kelsey Horton brought the senior home by hitting her 12th home run of the season. With Nikki Butler at the plate, the sophomore was also hit by a pitch and Victoria Castro followed with a homer of her own, extending New Mexico State’s 6-0 lead.

Heading to the bottom of the inning, De La Roca hit trouble in the circle after allowing a bunt with just an out recorded. A double by the Roos scored the runner and cut into NM State’s advantage. In the fourth, UMKC (10-25) recorded a triple and single to bring in another run, but New Mexico State remained ahead 6-2.

After scoreless fifth for the Aggie offense, Rodolph brought in Samaria Diaz to relieve the freshman in the circle. She posted a pair of strikeouts in the inning, helping the team maintain its lead. New Mexico State’s momentum carried over to the sixth with Glackin hitting an RBI single after Jeanelle Medina reached on a fielder’s choice.

Holding a 7-2 advantage, Diaz and the Aggie defense was able to hold the Roos scoreless in the sixth and seventh to close out the victory. De La Roca improved to 6-1 as she pitched 4.0 innings and allowed two runs on five hits while striking out three batters. Diaz pitched 3.0 innings in relief and allowed just one hit while also striking out three UMKC batters.

The Aggies hot offense continued into the second game of the doubleheader beginning with a double from Amy Bergeson. Horton followed with a double of her own to score the first run of the contest. A single by Butler and a walk to Castro loaded the bases in a hurry for NM State and Mejia came up clutch with a double to score all three runners, giving the Aggies the 4-0 advantage in the first.

Kayla Green got the start in the circle in the series finale and after walking the first batter, the junior struck out a pair. However a passed ball allowed the Roos’ runner to advance to third and an infield single scored a run for UMKC.

After a pair of scoreless innings for both teams, De La Roca added to the Aggie advantage in the top of the fourth when the freshman hit her first collegiate homer to left center field. In the following inning, Horton hits a single through the left side and Butler brought the junior home with an RBI double, giving NM State the 6-1 lead.

Rodolph brought in Mikayla Bongi in the bottom of the sixth to relieve Green in the circle. The freshman struggled from the start as she allowed a single and a double to the first batters she faced. Green reentered for NM State and a groundout to first scored a run for UMKC but it was the only run the junior allowed in the inning..

New Mexico State extended its lead in the top of the seventh after Nikki Butler hit a single for her fourth hit of the contest. Caity Szczesny followed by hitting an RBI triple out to left center field to give NM State the 7-2 lead. In the bottom of the inning, Green gave up a leadoff double to the UMKC that came around to score off an error by NM State. However, it was the final run scored and New Mexico State held on to complete the sweep of the Roos with the 7-3 victory

Green improved to 10-7 with the win as she went 7.0 innings and allowed four hits and just two runs with both unearned. The junior also recorded a new career high seven strikeouts in the victory.

New Mexico State returns home to host Battle of I-25 rival New Mexico for a midweek contest on Tuesday, April 3. First pitch is set for 5:30 p.m. MT.