After losing last weekend’s series to the Kansas Jayhawks, Nevada softball rebounded with a three-game sweep at home against the Colorado State Rams.
Despite sweeping the Rams, each game was decided by one run, with Saturday’s game going 14 innings before the Wolf Pack came out on top of the 8-7 score.
Nevada opened the series with a 5-4 win on Friday, riding the arm of senior pitcher McKenna Isenberg. Isenberg pitched a complete game, allowing four runs (three earned) on seven hits to go with five strikeouts.
Going into the fifth inning, the Wolf Pack was down a run until junior centerfielder Aaliyah Gibson smacked a 2-2 pitch over the right field fence. After Gibson touched all the bases to tie the game, Nevada followed it up with a run to take the lead before the inning ended.
After taking the lead, the Pack didn’t look back. The Rams only mustered one hit in the remaining two innings, including a one-two-three seventh. Isenberg struck out two Rams looking in the seventh to seal the victory.
Then on Saturday, the teams found themselves in a marathon. The game went 14 innings before the Wolf Pack walked off victorious by a score of 8-7.
After jumping out to a 5-1 lead in second, Nevada gave up four unanswered runs, including two in the sixth and one in the seventh to send the game to extras.
In the tenth, it appeared Colorado State would take the game after scoring a run to take the lead. But then, Alyssa Mendez hit a single up the middle to score Kenzi Goins and keep the game from ending.
After three scoreless innings, the game got interesting in the 14th. Colorado State started the inning with an RBI single from Hayle Evans, scoring Hannah McCorkhill.
After thirteen long innings on a hot day, the Pack somehow found an answer.
With two outs and the bases loaded, Melissa Arriaga singled to score Goins from third to tie the game. Right behind her, zooming from second base, was Gibson to beat the tag and send everyone at Hixson Park home happy.
Before the marathon began, former Wolf Pack player Jayme King was honored by the team. King passed away after her third bout with cancer. Her sister threw out the first pitch and Nevada players wore teal ribbons in their hair to honor her memory.
In the final game, Gibson again was the hero as the Pack overcame three errors to walk off again for their first sweep of the year.
Colorado State jumped out to a 3-0 lead after just two innings. In the first, the Rams’ Haley Hutton reached first base on an error, stole second, advanced to third on another error, then scored an unearned run by stealing home.
In the second inning, Cori Gamboa hit a two-run home run down the right-field line to stretch the lead to 3-0.
The Wolf Pack bounced back in the end, scoring three runs in the fifth and two in the seventh. After Erika Hansen reached on a double, Goins singled and moved Hansen to third. Then Gibson stepped up to the plate and brought them both home and ended the game with a double, her second hit of the day.
Nevada will travel to Boise State (26-17, 7-11) this weekend for their last road series of the regular season before returning home for the season finale against San Diego State (26-17, 10-8).