Utes Fall 5-2 in Series Opener with Stanford
SALT LAKE CITY –Utah managed eight hits and had solid relief pitching from Halle Morris but could not maintain its early offensive efficiency and fell to Stanford, 5-2, Friday evening in the first game of a four-game series at Dumke Family Stadium.
Stanford improves to 19-4 with the win while Utah falls to 11-10. Starter Sydney Sandez (6-2) took the loss for Utah, going 4.0 innings and allowing nine hits and three earned runs while striking out two. Regan Krause (6-3) went the distance for Stanford to earn the win.
Utah got on the board first in the bottom of the opening frame when Alyssa Barrera drilled a triple to the base of the wall in dead center field to score Madi Jacobus from first base after Jacobus had lined a one-out single. Stanford tied the game in the top of the second on a bases-loaded walk, but Sandez got out of the inning with no more damage, getting Stanford's Teaghan Cowles to fly out to right.
Stanford added three more runs in the third and one in the fourth to build a 5-1 lead that held until the bottom of the seventh when Utah's Haley Denning (1-3) led off with a triple and scored on a sacrifice fly by Barrera. The Utes, however, could not extend the rally and ultimately left nine runners on base for the game.
The Utes hit two triples for the first time this season, the first from Alyssa Barrera to score Haley Denning in the first inning and the other by Denning in the seventh to lead off the inning. She came in to score on a Barrera sac fly.
"This team wants to win games against good teams, but there are so many little things we need to do better in order for that to happen. So many players are getting opportunities to do something to help us win and yet we are not succeeding enough times. It's a four-game series and I know we will have even more chances tomorrow to do some big things. I'm looking forward to seeing who finds a way to step up and help us secure that first win in conference."
- Alyssa Barrera extended her hitting streak to seven games by going 1-3 with a triple and 2 RBI.
- After not hitting a triple since the 2019 season, when she had 9, Barrera now has tripled twice in he rlast three games.
- Halle Morris came on in relief of starter Sydney Sandez and held the Cardinal largely in check to give the Utes a chance for a comeback, allowing just two hits and one run over three innings.
- Utah knocked out eight hits from six different players, but could not consistently string hits together to gain consistent scoring punch, and ultimately left nine runners on base.
Utah and Stanford continue their four-game series Saturday with a doubleheader at Dumke Family Stadium. Game one is set to begin at 1 p.m. MT, with game two to get underway 30 minutes after the conclusion of the opening game. Sunday's single-game series finale begins at noon.