UCLA Drops Series Finale to Utah
LOS ANGELES – The No. 3 UCLA softball team fell to Utah 8-0 in five innings in the series finale at Easton Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The Bruins (39-6, 15-3 Pac-12) were held to five hits in the game. Megan Faraimo, who started the game, took the loss after allowing four runs – two earned – in two thirds of an inning.
The Utes scored their runs on eight hits and three home runs, two of which came in the first inning to help push Utah to an early 4-0 lead. After solo homers from Aliya Bellarde and Ellessa Bonstrom, Utah scored twice more before UCLA's first ups with two more base hits, an error and fielder's choice.
UCLA's best chance at putting runs on the board came in the bottom of the third inning when Kelli Godin, Kinsley Washington and Briana Perez all singled to load the bases with zero outs. A Delanie Wisz foul out to third base and a ground ball double play off the bat of Maya Brady ended the Bruins' scoring threat.
In the circle, Utah's Sydney Sandez and Shi Smith combined for five strikeouts over five shutout innings.
Utah catcher Katie Faulk led off the fourth inning with a four-pitch walk by Holly Azevedo. Faulk's pinch runner AJ Militello advanced to second on a passed ball by Wisz and to third on a groundout to shortstop. With two outs, Militello scored on a dribbler in front of home plate hit by Haley Denning who beat out Wisz's throw.
The Utes put the run rule into effect the next top half inning with a two-run homer by Kendall Lundberg off Holly Azevedo and two throwing errors by Seneca Curo at third base which allowed for another run to score.
UCLA will take on Arizona State at the top of the Pac-12 standings in a three-game series in Tempe, Ariz., next week beginning Friday, May 6 at 5 p.m. PT. Games two and three on Saturday and Sunday have first pitch times of 4 p.m. and 12 p.m.