Rebels wrap up Fall Ball with victory over CSN, finish sterling 6-0

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UNLV Softball in a pre-game huddle Friday afternoon before their double-header. Photo by Larissa Geilen.

UNLV softball emerged victorious in both games at Friday’s afternoon doubleheader, hosting local College of Southern Nevada. 

The Rebels won game one by a dozen runs with a final score of 12-0 and matched that margin of victory in the finale, winning 13-1. 

UNLV won all six of its Fall Ball games, winning by an average margin of 17 runs per game. The Rebels outscored their opponents 106-4 across three doubleheaders. 

Game One

Even with an early 11:45 a.m. first pitch, there was no “homecoming hangover” for the home team. 

With noticeable CSN fan presence in attendance, Rebel ace Jenny Bressler silenced the opposition from the pitcher’s plate once again, firing four innings of two-hit, no-run balls. 

Bressler started all three openers of Fall Ball’s doubleheaders, finishing a perfect 3-0. She ended having tossed 12 innings, allowing just four hits, one walk and a lone run while punching out 17 batters. Bressler will lead a deep and talented pitching staff this spring. 

Alanna Thiede completed the team shutout, sealing the final three frames without allowing a hit and earning the save. 

The Rebel bats were blistering hot facing arguably their toughest test yet. The Coyote staff held the Rebels scoreless in three frames in game one, the most scoreless innings of any game this fall. 

Despite the stiff competition, the Rebel lineup assumed control in the bottom of the second inning and would not relinquish the lead from there. 

Janyssa Martin and Lauryn Barker led off the assault with a pair of solo homers to left field sailing over the Lori Harrigan banner. 

Then, with a runner on base, RBI-machine April Vesser did what she does with ducks on the pond and launched a two-run opposite field home run to put the Rebels up four.

Vesser was also involved in the day’s most unusual play in the bottom of the fourth inning, when she stepped to the plate and hit a high fly ball deep into left field. 

CSN’s left-fielder tracked down the ball but was visibly blinded by the brightness of the valley sun. The outfielder raised her glove in desperation, but the ball ricocheted off her head and rolled to the left field corner. 

Vesser never stopped running and was rewarded with the rare inside-the-park home run. 

Game Two

The Fall Ball finale featured yet another impressive pitching performance from Rebel arms.

Starter Jenna Perez allowed a solo homer in the top of the first, but she quickly settled down afterwards and allowed just one more hit over four innings of work. She missed bats all afternoon and struck out an incredible 11 out of the 12 outs she recorded. 

The double-digit punchout performance brings her autumn total even with Bressler and the team lead at 17 strikeouts apiece.

Sabrina Jolin punctuated the pitching with three perfect innings, striking out five batters.

Though the Rebels as a team hit three more home runs in the second game and connected on a total of 24 homers during Fall Ball, the offensive star of the six-game season was Vesser.

Vesser finished the fall with the following eye-popping stat line: 10-for-14 (0.714 batting average), 10 runs scored, nine home runs and 19 RBI.

Rebel softball now heads into intermission as coaches hit the recruiting trail before commencing the regular season in February. 

UNLV finished second in the Mountain West last season with a conference record of 17-7.

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