With half the season complete, standing 14-9 overall, it’s easy to say that it’s been quite the road trip for the women’s softball team this season, literally. With 34 game days scheduled, a majority of the games will be on the road, 23 to be exact, with three games on the Wolverines turf.
Traveling to 11 different states during the season can take a real toll on the team but not enough to bring them down.
“It gets tiring,” said Head Coach Rachel Hartgrove. “We just got back from an 11-day road trip and I think everyone wanted to kill each other by the end of it.”
While UVU students took the week off for spring break, the lady Wolverines set quest on an 11-day road stretch to Arkansas and Florida where they went 8-3 overall. In Arkansas, the Wolverines lost 1-2. In Florida, they started strong with seven wins, but breaking the streak with a tough loss against Columbia as they left the Sunshine State.
Utah Valley hooked its most recent win against the Marist Red Foxes Wednesday as they snatched a 4-3 victory. The Wolverines kept a consistent strong lead with pitcher Josi Summers heating up the game, allowing only one hit from the other team to surpass the five innings she pitched. The Foxes came back in the sixth inning to steal away the lead but couldn’t hold up as Utah Valley took the win.
“Marist is a good team,” Hartgrove said. “They’re swinging it well, have great pitching and great bats over there, so it was a good win for us.”
The game started heating up with third baseman Debra Lovell’s home run in the fourth inning, recording it as her second home run of the season. Along with Lovell’s homer, shortstop Kyrstin Jachim added two RBI’s in the first-inning with a triple and Dynasty Lauvai finished the game with a game winning RBI in the bottom of the fifth.
“Deborah had a very big game,” Hartgrove said. “She’s been stricken late but had a three for three with a couple extra base hits and a homer. Jachim just continued to be hot. That two run triple in the first inning was real big with her.”
This game was the second home game out of the few that the Wolverines got to hit home. Although UVU’s been hitting the road more frequently than ever, a sense of comfort and tranquility is felt when they play the home field. But they’re always on their toes ready to prepare for what’s ahead.
“We just can’t play early in the year, we have to go away,” Hartgrove said. “It’s great to be home though. This is already our second home game and it’s nice to be home once in a while. It wears on the girls being away but it’s not too bad. They know what they’re in for.”
As the Wolverines left their second home game feeling confident and victorious, they prepare to head to Moraga, California where they prepare to open the Pacific Coast Softball Conference against Saint Mary’s.
“We open conference this upcoming weekend at St. Mary’s, so this was a big win for us to get that flow back,” Hartgrove said.