April 1, 2017
BOISE, Idaho - Boise State committed nine errors Saturday against Utah State, with five of those coming in a six-run first inning, and could not climb out of the hole in a 7-3 loss to the Aggies at Dona Larsen Park.
The Broncos (21-11, 3-5 MW) will look to salvage a game from the series Sunday, as they and the Aggies (23-7, 6-2 MW) square off at noon.
"Roni kept us in there, and she deserved better backup than she got. We're in a little bit of a tough spot right now. We're still young, and I'd like to see our leadership come through a little bit more," said Boise State head coach Cindy Ball. "For tomorrow, we're just going to go back to discipline. I'd like to see us stick to our plan and play as a team."
It was a nightmare start for the Broncos in the top of the first, as three of the first four Utah State batters reached base on an error. Bronco leftfielder Jessica McKay missed Amee Aarhus' looping liner to start, allowing Aarhus to reach third. Aarhus then scored the opening run as Jazmin Clarke's bouncer back to the circle was booted by pitcher Paige Reimann, and Victoria Saucedo followed with an RBI double to plate Clarke. Paxton Provost would reach on a throwing error by Tatiana Sorokina at third, and after a walk to Sarina Jarmillo, Reimann's day was done as Veronica Lynch was brought into the circle.
Riley Plogger made it 3-0 with a sacrifice fly to left, and two batters after Brina Buttacavoli reached on a Rebekah Cervanes error at shortstop, Mia Maher and Aarhus delivered RBI singles. The final run of the inning scored as Sorokina could not come up with Clarke's bouncer at third. Plogger, Maher and Aarhus would have two hits apiece to lead the Aggies Saturday.
Utah State starter April Brown retired the first 10 Broncos she faced until Izzy Serrano bunted aboard with one out in the fourth. That started a sequence in which the Broncos also spoiled Brown's shutout bid, as Elaina Mayer and Makenzie Sullivan worked walks to load the bases, and Jessica McKay drove in Serrano with a line drive that was too hot for a diving Jaramillo to handle at short. Cassidy Edwards followed with an RBI groundout to second to make it 7-2.
Serrano would go on to lead the Broncos with two hits in the contest.
Freshman Micaela Leal hit a two-out, pinch-hit homer in the seventh, the first of her collegiate career, for the Broncos to cap the scoring.
"Mickey's swing was awesome, it was the approach we had asked every single one of them to take and she stuck to it.," Ball said of Leal's home run. "You look at the production today; Jess had a line drive base hit that drove in a run. Izzy did a good job of getting us going and Oscar [Mayer] got on in her at-bat."
The Broncos couldn't take advantage of a courageous outing from Lynch, who gave up just two unearned runs while holding the Aggies to just one more run over six and two-thirds innings. Reimann, falling to 4-4 with the loss, gave up five runs (one earned) on a hit and a walk and three Bronco errors. Lynch and Kelsey Broadus, who struck out Paxton Provost to end the seventh with two runners in scoring position, teamed up to strand 12 Utah State runners in the contest.
Brown improved to 9-2 for Utah State, striking out six while giving up three runs on five hits.