Skip to main content

Pac-12 Softball

24 NCAA Champions
112 WCWS Appearances
218 First-Team All-Americans

No. 15 Utah drops Ole Miss to reach Salt Lake City Regional final

May 20, 2023

SALT LAKE CITY – Mariah Lopez threw a complete game with 10 strikeouts and Ellessa Bonstrom broke the program record for career RBIs for the No. 15 University of Utah softball team in a 7-1 victory over the Ole Miss Rebels on Saturday on day two of NCAA Regionals at the Dumke Family Softball Stadium.
This triumph puts the Utes, who now stand at 39-13, one victory away from clinching a spot in the super regional series and they'll have the chance to earn that win on Sunday, with the first pitch being thrown at 12 p.m.
"I'm so proud of this group," said head coach Amy Hogue. "I feel a lot like yesterday. There were a lot of pieces that were put together, aggressive baserunning, clutch hitting, all of the above. Great team win and [Mariah Lopez and Ellessa Bonstrom] led the way."
After a scoreless first, the Utes broke on top in the second when Abby Dayton walked, stole second, moved to third on a hit and skedaddled home thanks to a Shelbi Ortiz groundout. The Rebels had an answer an inning later, as a Keila Kamoku triple chased home Savana Sikes to tie the score.
Despite that hiccup and a pair of early jams, including a bases-loaded predicament that she escaped from in the first, Lopez settled in soon after. She struck out the side in the fourth and didn't allow an extra base hit after Kamoku's triple. Meanwhile, the Utes' lineup went to work and quickly supplied their starter with run support.
Utah reclaimed the lead in the fourth, which started with consecutive infield hits off the bats of Dayton and Haley Denning. Following a double steal, Kendall Lundberg lifted a sacrifice fly into left that plated Dayton. Denning then stole third and dented the dish on an Ortiz sacrifice fly for a 3-1 edge.
The sixth inning is when the Utes blew the game open with a four-run uprising. Hits by Dayton and Denning followed by a double steal put two runners in scoring position for Aliya Belarde, who served a two-run double into left. Bonstrom added to the advantage with her record-breaking hit, an RBI triple that split the gap in left-center and Sophie Jacquez tallied Bonstrom one batter later with a sacrifice fly. Lopez took over after that, posting two more zeroes to secure Utah's spot on Sunday.