After a strong finish in the Dixie State Tournament on March 13, the Southern Utah University Softball program will head back down south for another matchup with Dixie State University on March 16 at 5 p.m. at the Karl Brooks Field.
Last time out
The Thunderbirds dropped their first three games of the DSU Tournament before finishing with two solid wins over Big Ten Foe Wisconsin University and the University of Maine.
In their matchup with Wisconsin, the Thunderbirds were down 3-1 in the top of the sixth inning when freshman Riley Shue stepped up and hit a three-run moonshot home run over the right-field wall to carry the T-Birds over the Badgers 4-3.
After dropping their first game against Maine earlier in the tournament, Southern Utah rebounded well in their rematch with a dominating 6-2 win when pitcher Capri Franzen turned in a four-hit, eight-strikeout performance.
Coming into this matchup, Southern Utah has a 3-17 overall record with a team earned run average of 7.14 and an overall batting average of .183.
Senior Makall Whetten has the hottest bat for the Thunderbirds currently. Whetten has a .286 batting average, a .434 on-base percentage, and five doubles. In SUU’s last matchup with the Trailblazers, Whetten recorded three singles.
Freshman Jayne Sepulveda has also seen success at the plate this season. Sepulveda leads the Thunderbirds with 14 hits and a .344 slugging percentage. Earlier this year against Loyola Marymount University, Sepulveda had a career day earning two hits including her first home run as a Thunderbird.
Looking at the opponents
The Trailblazers come into this matchup with a 6-12 overall record, losing their last game to the Wisconsin Badgers 12-7. DSU has had a stellar start to the year offensively with a .291 batting average. Defensively, things have been a different story as they have the second-highest earned run average in the Western Athletic Conference with a 6.23.
DSU is led by junior catcher Shea Clements who has belted five home runs and 26 total hits with a .361 batting average. Clements is coming off a dominant performance against Wisconsin where she went three for four with a home run. Freshman pitcher Attlyn Johnson is the Trailblazers ace with a 4-3 overall record.
The Thunderbirds last took on the Trailblazers a week ago on March 13 in the opening game of the DSU Tournament. Dixie State edged out the Thunderbirds 3-1 in an exhilarating pitching duel.
Live streaming against DSU will be available on the WAC Digital Network.
Story by: Seth Whitehouse
Photo Courtesy of SUU Athletics