The Dixie State University softball team swept through another opponent over the weekend with four wins over Hawaii Pacific University.
Junior pitcher Aryn Feickert recorded two shutout wins — one win Saturday, the other Sunday. Dixie State stayed strong through adversity in the other two games, coming back from a deficit or breaking a tie game.
After the first inning of the second game, Dixie trailed 2-0 against the Vulcans.
The second inning put the Red Storm ahead after four runners scored, leaving the score at 4-2 at the bottom of the second inning.
From that point, each team scored one point to lead DSU to the 5-3 win. Freshman pitcher Brooklyn Beardshear earned the win.
“[HPU] is a team that, going into [Saturday], we were tied with as far as in the loss column; we both had five losses,” head coach Randy Simkins said. “These are huge games for us. If we want to win the conference championship, we need to string together some wins in these series.”
Feickert recorded a 6-0 win in the first game Sunday while allowing seven hits.
“I think the team executed offensively,” said Feickert, a communication major from Lancaster, Calif. “We all had to stay mentally tough. It wasn’t just me in the circle, but everyone. I think everyone did their job to contribute.”
A Dixie State University softball player occupied third base in the bottom of the seventh inning when a ball got past the catcher.
The score was tied 7-7 until University of Hawaii-Hilo’s catcher muffed the outside pitch and freshman shortstop Josey Hartman slid safely into home plate.
“Coach Simkins told me right before that, he said, ‘Be ready for a passed ball. You never know,’” said Hartman, a general education major from Mapleton.
The final score read 8-7, and the Red Storm survived the scare that the Vulcans had given them.
“We came to an intense part of the game, but we just hung in there and just stayed strong for each other,” Feickert said. “We played smart on the base paths, like [Hartman].”
In the top of the seventh, DSU’s junior pitcher Michelle Duncan got out of a jam. The bases were loaded with a tied game and only one out. The batter slammed one straight back at Duncan, who caught it for the second out.
Duncan hung in tough and struck out the next batter to get out of the inning.
In the first game of the day, DSU won 8-0 thanks to the great pitching of Feickert.
“[Feickert] was lights-out in the first game,” Simkins said.
Feickert also started the second game and pitched for the first four innings before getting a rest.
“She threw really well in the second game,” Simkins said. “We pulled her after they got a couple runners on in that five-run fourth inning. We weren’t able to string together outs like we needed to right there.”
Feickert struck out 12 batters and only allowed three hits in the game. Dixie State had its way with 12 hits and scored a run in all innings except the second.
Dixie will next play doubleheaders against Chaminade University Saturday and Sunday at Karl Brooks Field.
“I think we just (need to) keep doing what we are doing,” Feickert said. “We need to have sound defense and offense and work on those coming together and stay mentally tough in the circle as well.”