Aztecs score three in ninth with two outs for series-opening win
Video highlights courtesy goaztecs.com
April 6, 2018 (Las Vegas) - The San Diego State softball team scored three runs in the top of the ninth inning with two outs to down UNLV 5-2 in the series opener Friday night at Eller Media Stadium in Las Vegas.
Zaria Meshack and Kiera Wright came up with the big hits for the Aztecs (11-23, 2-5 MW), scoring Aris Metcalfe and Megan Smith, respectively. Meshack later scored on a fielding error by the Rebels (21-14, 3-7 MW).
SDSU jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning, thanks to four hits. Wright and Shelby Thompson each had back-to-back singles to lead off the game and, after a strikeout, scored when Kelsey Munoz ripped a single up the middle. One batter later, Molly Sturdivant singled down the right-field line and moved Munoz to third, but Smith struck out looking to end the inning.
UNLV had chances score each of the first three innings, but San Diego State starter Julie McDonald kept getting out of jams. McDonald left two runners on base with two outs in the bottom of the first, a runner on first and third with two outs in the second, and two runners in scoring position with two outs in the third.
The Rebels then chased McDonald from the game with a leadoff double in the fourth. Alex Formby entered the game and walked Alyssa Navarro, she got Myranda Bueno out on a sacrifice bunt and Charlie Masterson out on a grounder. Reina Bondi, however, doubled to right-center field just past the glove a diving right fielder Megan Smith to score both runners and tie up the game.
The Aztecs got a runner into scoring position in the top of the eighth as Wright reached on an error by Rebel pitcher Janine Petmecky, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Thompson and to third on a lineout by West Hills grad Katie Byrd. Petmecky, who at one point in the game retired 17 straight SDSU batters, got Munoz to ground out to shortstop to get out of the jam.
After Formby (8-9) retired UNLV in order in the bottom of the eighth, San Diego State went to work in the ninth. Sturdivant drew a one-out walk and was replaced by Metcalfe. Taylor Stewart followed with a pinch-hit single to move Metcalfe to second. After Iesha Hill grounded out to first, which moved Metcalfe and Smith, who re-entered for Stewart), Meshack blooped a single to left field to score Metcalfe with the game-winning run. Wright followed with a single up the middle to plate Smith. After a wild pitch, Meshack score on a fielding error with Thompson at the plate for the final runs of the game.
After a one-out error in the bottom of the ninth, Formby retired the final two batters she faced to pick up the win.
Wright had two hits to lead the Aztec offense, which outhit the Rebels 7-6. Hill walked twice, and Sturdivant singled and walked for SDSU.
Formby got the win after allowing just one run on one hit and two walks over six innings, striking out two. McDonald surrendered one run on three hits and two walks over three innings as the starter, striking out three.
The Aztecs improved to 2-5 this season in extra-inning games.
SDSU improved to 5-2 on the season when scoring at least five runs.
Game No. 2 of the three-game weekend series is set for 4 p.m. Saturday.
San Diego State 5, UNLV 2 (9 innings)
San Diego State (11-23, 2-5 MW) 200 000 003 -- 5 7 1
UNLV (21-14, 3-7 MW) 000 200 000 -- 2 6 2
McDonald, Formby (4) and Sturdivant; Petmecky and Stover
W - Formby, 8-9; L - Petmecky, 13-6