Hogs Victorious in Final Game in Puerto Vallarta
PUERTO VALLARTA, MEXICO – The University of Arkansas softball team is back in its groove, posting an 8-2 win over Sacramento State on Saturday (Feb. 16) in the Hogs’ final game of the Puerto Vallarta College Challenge. Katie Warrick recorded her second home run of the season, while Mary Haff secured the win from the circle and Autumn Storms’ fifth-inning relief is good for her fifth career save.
Arkansas will return to Fayetteville to host Southeast Missouri State on Thursday (Feb. 21) for its home opener and the start of the Razorback Invitational. The Hogs will also face SIU-Edwardsville, Drake, and IUPUI during the invitational.
Storms and sophomore Kayla Green earned spots on the Puerto Vallarta College Challenge All-Tournament Team after two stellar performances over the course of the Razorbacks’ four games in Mexico. Storms recorded a shutout win and a save, while giving up no earned runs and picking up 18 strikeouts. Green finished with a .556 average at the plate, recording her first home run of the season against Northern Colorado. Green rattled off back-to-back multi-hit games against Washington and UNC as well.
How It Happened
After a scoreless first inning, the Hogs got to work in the second, taking advantage of a Hornet error and a walk to load the bases with Warrick, Green, and Ashley Diaz. Freshman Maggie Hicks would follow with a hit-by-pitch call to score Warrick and give Arkansas a one-run lead.
Sacramento State responded in the bottom of the third inning, scoring two on a single up the middle. The hit would give the Hornets the lead, but not for long.
The Hogs bounced back in the fourth, using the quick feet of Carley Haizlip, Haydi Bugarin, and Hicks to score three runs, all a result of errors by the Sacramento State defense. Haizlip entered to pinch run for Arkansas after Green reached on a lead-off walk, followed by a base-hit by Hicks and a fielder’s choice by Bugarin.
In the fifth inning, the Razorbacks tacked on another run to give the Hogs a 5-2 lead. After Warrick fired off a line drive down the right-field line for a double, Keely Edwards would enter to pinch run. Edwards would cross the plate only two batters later, as Hicks put the ball in play and reached on another Hornet error, giving Edwards the chance to score.
The final runs of the game came in the sixth inning for Arkansas, starting with Hannah McEwen, who earned her first hit of the game with a single through the right side. McEwen would make her way around to third base with a pass ball and wild pitch.
In steps Warrick to absolutely unload on a 1-1 pitch and send it out far over the left-field fence, giving the Razorbacks a comfy 7-2 lead. With the bases cleared, Diaz followed with a single to left field, she wasn’t on first base long before Green stepped in and delivered a double to left-center, sending Diaz in for the Hogs’ eighth and final run of the game.
Haff pitched a complete four innings for the win and Storms relieved Haff at the start of the fifth inning – the power duo helped propel Arkansas to its first ever win over Sacramento State. Together, they accounted for nine strikeouts and allowed only four hits.
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