Ruston, La. – Jessie Hufstetler blasted a three-run home run in the first inning to lead the top-seeded San Jose State University softball team to a 3-1 victory over second-seeded New Mexico State in the Spartans’ second game of the WAC Tournament on Friday.
The Spartans (41-15) advance to the WAC Tournament championship game on Saturday at 2:00 p.m. (CDT) against New Mexico State. It will be San Jose State’s first appearance in the WAC Tournament championship game.
In the first inning, three of San Jose State’s first four batters reached base. With Markesha Collins on second and Cheryl Freitas on first, Hufstetler bombed a home run to right field, giving the Spartans a 3-0 lead.
“Jessie is one of our leading RBI producers and the bigger the stage, the bigger her hits,” said WAC Coach of the Year Peter Turner. “As a freshman, I couldn’t be more pleased with her performance.”
In the sixth, New Mexico State (36-19) spoiled WAC Pitcher of the Year Amanda Pridmore’s bid for a shutout when Kelsey Dodd hit an RBI-single for the 3-1 score. After a single, Pridmore retired the inning’s final two batters, and faced just one batter over the minimum in the seventh for her 28th win of the year.
Pridmore scattered seven hits, striking out five and walking two in her 26th complete game this season. Alex Newman (23-13) suffered the loss for the Aggies, allowing six hits and the Spartans’ three runs in two innings in the circle. In 4.1 innings of relief, Makayla McAdams scattered five hits with two strikeouts and one walk, while Celisha Walker retired the Spartans’ final two batters of the game after relieving McAdams.
San Jose State’s 11 hits was the 13th time this season the team recorded double-digit hits. Said Turner, “I’m happy with how we hit the ball, but we should have been better in the clutch to do more damage. We need to have quality at bats when we have runners on third base, and remain patient when we’re ahead of the count.”