Utah senior right-hander Generra Nielson tied her career high with 13 strikeouts on Saturday versus Portland State.
Feb. 18, 2012
LAS VEGAS - Senior right-hander Generra Nielson threw her fourth straight complete game, but the University of Utah softball team dropped a 2-0 decision to Portland State during the second day of the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic Saturday at Stephanie Lynn Craig Park.
Utah (4-3) was held hitless by Portland State through its first six at-bats and the Utes had their three-game win streak snapped.
In her sixth start of the season, Utah senior Generra Nielson allowed two earned runs on six hits, while tying her career high with 13 strikeouts. Her previous career high for strikeouts came at the Big 10/MWC/ACC Challenge in Tallahassee, Fla., against Wisconsin on March 13, 2011. Nielson, a Blanding, Utah native, has had 10 or more strikeouts in each of her last three outings and eight times over her career.
Portland State's Brittney Hendrickson hit a solo home run off an 0-1 delivery from Nielson to lead off the second inning to put PSU ahead 1-0. The Vikings then knocked in a second run when a double by Kayla Norrie grazed the top of the left-field wall that allowed Alexa Morales to score from first base. It was only the second time this season that Utah's opponents have scored first and the Utes are now 1-1 in those contests.
After giving up a single to Portland State's Carly McEachran with one out in the top of the third frame, Nielson retired 10 straight Vikings before Hendrickson singled an 0-2 pitch up the middle with two out in the bottom of the sixth.
Utah threatened to score for the first time in the bottom of the fifth frame when Hannah Clements reached third base on a two-out error by PSU's right fielder, but the Utes were unable to convert on the scoring chance.
Utah is now 2-1 at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic and concludes action at the event with a doubleheader tomorrow at UNLV's Eller Media Stadium. The Utes take on UC Riverside tomorrow at 9 a.m. PT and Cal State Northridge at 11:15 a.m. PT.