Gibson's Walk-Off Gives Nevada Softball a Sweep Over CSU
After finding itself down by a run heading into the bottom of the seventh, the junior Aaliyah Gibson led Nevada softball team to storm back and score a pair of runs to defeat Colorado State, 5-4, in walk-off fashion for the second day in a row.
After finding itself down by a run heading into the bottom of the seventh, the junior Aaliyah Gibson led Nevada softball team to storm back and score a pair of runs to defeat Colorado State, 5-4, in walk-off fashion for the second day in a row. With the win, the Wolf Pack improves to 26-19 on the season and 11-7 in Mountain West play, which is the most conference wins for Nevada since joining the conference.
Sunday’s win also marks the first time this season the Pack has completed a series sweep over an opponent. Gibson led the offense with a game-high two hits, and brought around the game-tying and game-winning RBI with her double in the bottom of the seventh.
In the circle, senior McKenna Isenberg tossed complete game number 26 on the season, using just 97 pitches to go the distance. She finished the game allowing three earned runs off of four hits and walked just one batter in the process.
For the third day in a row, the Rams (23-20, 8-13 MW) jumped out to an early lead, scoring a total of three runs in the first two innings. With the Pack in a 3-0 hole early, Nevada’s bats came alive in the bottom of the fifth, scoring three runs to tie the score.
After junior Amanda Nicholas led off the home half of the fifth by being hit by a pitch, senior Melissa Arriaga used a sacrifice bunt to move Ali Tedford, who pinch-ran for Nicholas, all the way to third on the play. Senior Raquel Martinez then followed Arriaga’s at bat with a base-knock up the middle, which brought home Tedford.
With a runner on a just one out in the inning, Nevada head coach Josh Taylor went to his bench, which ended up paying its dividends. He turned to freshman Mele Tausinga, who, on a 3-2 pitch, launched a towering fly ball over the leftfield fence for her second home run of the season to tie the game at three.
Colorado State didn’t fold though as the Rams responded in the top of the sixth with a run of their own to reclaim the lead, 4-3. The Pack threatened to get that run back in the bottom of the inning, loading the bases with just one, but was unable to plate any runs.
In the seventh, Isenberg blanked the Rams to keep the Pack within a run, heading into the bottom half of the frame. After freshman Sienna Swain grounded out to leadoff the inning, junior Erika Hansen collected her 11th double of the season to put a runner a base with one out for freshman Kenzi Goins, who singled Hansen over to third.
With runners at the corners, Gibson stepped up to the plate and took a 1-1 pitch to the gap in left centerfield, which scored both Hansen and Goins, giving Nevada the walk-off victory, 5-4. Gibson’s two-RBI double marked the Pack’s ninth win in its past 12 MW games.
Up next, Nevada will travel to Boise, Idaho and take on Boise State May 5-7 for the team’s final road trip of the 2017 campaign.
Nevada Press Release