Santa Clara Drops Tough 5-4 Decision to Unbeaten UTEP

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico – Santa Clara University's softball team dropped its last game of the 2012 Hotel Encanto Invitational in the final moments, losing to UTEP 5-4, with Miners scoring the winning run on a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the seventh.

Santa Clara (1-5) had rallied from an early four-run deficit to tie the game on Kelly Scribner's two-run homer in the fourth. Briana Knight had provided a double in the third, which plated two and got SCU going offensively.

Chelsea Troupe hit a solo homerun in the first inning and a two-RBI double in the second to account for three of the four early runs for UTEP (4-0). However, Jessica Turner and Briana Rios would shut out the Miners for the next four innings until Tahla Wade tripled to lead off the seventh and following two intentional walks, Rios issued another to give the game to UTEP.

Cynthia Villastrigo, who pitched UTEP to victory against Santa Clara on Thursday, came on in relief to throw four innings and was credited with the win.

Santa Clara will be in action next weekend at the Fresno State Weekend Series at Bulldog Diamond. The Broncos will play two games against both Cal State Fullerton and Fresno State beginning Saturday, Feb. 18.

THIS WEEK' SCHEDULE/RESULTS:
Thursday, Feb. 9, 2012

UTEP 11, Santa Clara 3 (El Paso, Tex.)
Friday, Feb. 10, 2012 (Hotel Encanto Invitational; Las Cruces, NM)
Santa Clara 12, Saint Mary's 10
Illinois-Chicago 5, Santa Clara 1
Saturday, Feb. 11, 2012 (Hotel Encanto Invitational; Las Cruces, NM)
Indiana 9, Santa Clara 1
NEW MEXICO STATE 11, Santa Clara 2
Sunday, Feb. 12, 2012 (Hotel Encanto Invitational; Las Cruces, NM)
UTEP 5, Santa Clara 4