Sports Brief | Baseball, softball, track and field and lacrosse, March 25-April 1 

Baseball avoids sweep, drops three of four in home series 

     The UCCS Mountain Lions baseball team fought back from being down 3-0 in their series against the MSU-Denver Roadrunners to take the final game on March 27, narrowly avoiding a second sweep of the season. 

     Game 1 was one of the worst defensive performances of the season for the Mountain Lions, allowing 25 runs in the nine innings. Pitcher Jonathan Cowles was credited with his third loss of the season after allowing fourteen hits and eleven runs in his four innings of pitching. 

     Games 2 and 3 were more of the same defensively, with the Mountain Lions collapsing in the top of the ninth inning after knotting the game up at 14 in the first part of their doubleheader, losing 19-14. 

     During the following game, redshirt freshman infielder Caleb Stubbings had the only run-scoring hit for UCCS with a homer to right field to score freshman outfielder Kit Wiggington. The Roadrunners responded with 16 unanswered runs to win the series, hoping to take all four in the final game. 

     The highlight of the last game of the series, however, was some strong pitching from the Mountain Lions, who didn’t allow a run through the first five innings. After the Roadrunners took a 6-4 lead going into the ninth inning, senior outfielder Aaron Faragallah crushed a straightaway grand slam to center field, walking it off for UCCS and putting them back into the winning column. 

Softball takes all four vs. Adams State in first sweep of the season 

     UCCS softball bounced back from a three-game losing streak over the weekend, securing their first sweep of an opponent of the season and putting themselves back over .500 with 16 wins and 14 losses. 

     The Mountain Lions faced the Adams State Grizzlies, the RMAC’s worst team in terms of conference record, on March 26-27. 

     After back and forth scoring in the first four innings ended with the Mountain Lions on top, 5-4, a trio of home runs in the fourth and sixth innings gave UCCS six straight runs, with freshman Paige White, redshirt junior Peyton Reisman and redshirt junior Sawyer Brewster going deep to take Game 1. 

     The next two games had the Mountain Lions ending early off mercy-rule, with a 10-2 walkoff victory following a single up the middle by White and an 8-0 shutout win for redshirt junior Braelyne Crenshaw, who didn’t allow a single run through her five-inning complete game. 

     To close out the series, the Mountain Lions had another three-home run outing, with junior shortstop Solana Martinez hitting two on the day, including a fifth inning shot to center field to break the tie game and open a two-run advantage.  

     The Grizzlies couldn’t fight back, and with a 5-3 score UCCS won their fourth straight game and improved to 16-14 on the year. 

Record-breaking day for track and field 

     The Mountain Lions track and field squad represented UCCS at the Spank Blasing Open in Pueblo and broke three university records from March 25-26. 

     Redshirt senior Kayla Zink, who already held the record for the 200m, recorded a 24.08s time, breaking the record and setting a national qualifying mark for the same event. Zink also earned second place in the 4x100m relay. 

     Melissa Moreni, a sophomore track athlete, recorded a sub-14 time in the 100m hurdles, with a time of 13.98s. Moreni qualified for nationals and became the first Mountain Lions in program history to get under fourteen seconds in the event. 

     Finally, redshirt senior Lydia Pavlenko set the third school record of the open in the women’s high jump, clearing a bar height of 1.70 and qualifying for nationals. 

Lacrosse continues home winning streak 

     UCCS lacrosse won their fourth and fifth straight games to continue their home stand, with wins against the CSU-Pueblo Thunderwolves on March 29 and the Westminster Griffins on April 1. 

     In their match against the winless Thunderwolves, redshirt sophomore attacker Hannah Mill and senior midfielder Natalie Church combined for four of six Mountain Lion goals in the first period, taking a 6-1 lead into the second. 

     After UCCS established a double-digit lead to head into halftime, they never looked back, winning their first of two games during their weekend stretch, 19-8 

     The second game was no different following a 2-1 lead only two minutes into the first period. After the Griffins got on the board, the Mountain Lions scored ten consecutive goals and didn’t allow Westminster to score through nearly thirty minutes of game time. 

     After a comeback saw the Griffins cut the lead to just five, sophomore midfielder Julia Patrick scored and assisted on the last three goals for the Mountain Lions, closing the game for UCCS with a 15-7 victory.