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Holm Hits Walk-Off Homer; Ute Softball Beats CSU, 11-10

Whitney Holm's walk-off homer gave Utah an 11-10 win over Colorado State on Friday.

Whitney Holm's walk-off homer gave Utah an 11-10 win over Colorado State on Friday.

April 30, 2010

Box Score

TAYLORSVILLE, Utah - Sophomore third baseman Whitney Holm a game-winning solo home run to give the University of Utah softball team an 11-10 win over Colorado State in a Mountain West Conference game at Bruin Field on the Salt Lake Community College campus.

Utah (24-24, 4-6 MWC) scored a run in all seven of its at-bats of the game. Utah has won seven of its last 10 games

The Nos. 8 and 9 positions in the Ute batting order combined to go 6-for-8 with two home runs, six RBI. Holm was 3-for-4 at the plate with two RBI and two runs scored, while Tia Palauni was 3-for-4 as well with three runs driven in. Lindsey Palmer was the third Ute go 3-for-4 with one RBI and a run scored.

"It was fun to have both of our eight and nine hitters hit two home runs," Utah head coach Amy Hogue said. "We had kids who can hit throughout the lineup. When we're aggressive, we're tough to beat. We faced [Colorado State's Kelli Eubanks] earlier this season on the road and she no-hit us. It just goes to show that when we're aggressive and confident when we swing, good things will happen."

Four other Utes had two hits apiece, including Brook Olson (2-for-4), Kara Foster (2-for-4 with two RBI), Joni Cook (2-for-3 with one RBI) and Kelsi Hoopiiaina (2-for-4 with one RBI).

Brittany Parker started in the circle for the Utes, sending the Rams down in order during the first two innings. Parker allowed six runs on six hits with two strikeouts and three walks.

"Early on in the game, Brittany got the first two innings down pretty easily," Hogue said. "To face only seven hitters and be in the third inning is a big deal. You can't underestimate what she did for us today. Containing the top of their lineup to start the game is huge. For us to be able to have the lead going into the third inning was a big deal."

 

 

Cook came on in for six innings of relief, going five innings while allowing four runs on five hits with four strikeouts and two walks. Cook earned the win in the decision and improved to 2-5 this season.

"Joni is a good pitcher," Hogue said. "She throws a lot of different pitches for strikes and really gets to hitters. She left a couple of balls up and they hit them, but for the most part, she kept them off balance and got a lot of key outs for us."

In the first inning, Olson started the game with a hit between the CSU third baseman and shortstop for a leadoff single. When Hannah Clements grounded out, Olson advanced to second base and was able to score on a two-out, two-run single by Cook. An Eagle, Idaho native, Cook has now driven in 11 runs this season.

The Utes have scored in the first inning and have been the first team to score 30 times this season. Utah is outscoring its opponents 62-33 during the current campaign and is 18-11 when scoring first.

Palmer started the second inning with a double over the outstretched arm of the Rams' right fielder. Palauni came up with one out and slapped an RBI single through the middle of the Colorado State defensive alignment to give Utah a 2-0 lead. Palauni now has 24 RBI this year.

The Rams put together a six-run effort in the third inning, but Foster quickly responded for Utah with her 63 rd career home run over the left-center field fence in the bottom of the third inning to bring Utah within three runs, 6-3. Cook followed Foster with a double that landed in the right-center field gap and then took third base after a wild pitch by the Colorado State pitcher. Palmer delivered an RBI single up the middle to send Cook to home plate to cut Utah's deficit to two runs.

CSU's Caitlin Stem led off the fourth inning with a solo home run over the left-center field off Cook to give the Rams a 7-4 edge.

Utah came back to tie the game with three runs in the fourth inning. To start the frame, Palauni slammed the first pitch she saw in the at-bat over the center field fence for her sixth home run of year and her 25th run driven in on the year. Holm pounded a double down the left-field line before Olson drove a single through the left side of the Ram infield to put Ute runners on first and third base. Foster then pushed Holm across the plate with an RBI single before Olson cross the plate after a CSU illegal pitch.

The first two Ute hitters in the fifth inning, Palauni and Holm, connected for back-to-back home runs to give Utah its first lead of the game at 9-7. Palauni cranked her second homer of the game on a 2-2 delivery from the CSU pitcher. Holm followed by drilling the first pitch of her at-bat to straight-away center field.

Colorado State's Ashlie Munoz hit a three-run home run that wrapped around the left-field foul pole to give the Rams a 10-9 edge.

Utah countered with a Hoopiiaina leadoff home run to start the sixth inning and knot the game at 10 runs apiece.

Holm then hit another leadoff home run on a 1-1 delivery to give the Utes the 11-10 walk-off victory.

There were a combined total of 16 home runs hit at Bruin Field this week.

The Utes continue their MWC schedule tomorrow against Colorado State. First pitch from Bruin Field is set for 1 p.m.

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