LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Iowa State (6-4) had its best offensive performance of the season in a 12-4 run-rule victory over San Jose State (8-2) on Sunday in the finale of the 2018 Marucci Desert Classic. The Cyclones went 4-1 in the tournament, with wins over two 2017 NCAA Regional teams in BYU and San Jose State.
Kaylee Bosworth and Nychole Antillon both went 3-for-4 at the plate, and Bosworth launched her third home run in as many games, leading Iowa State past the defending Mountain West champions. Taylor Nearad also had the finest performance of her young Cyclone career, going 2-for-4 at the plate with two doubles and two RBIs. Sami Williams, Sally Woolpert and Kaila Konz also notched two hits each on the day.
Iowa State 12, San Jose State 4
San Jose State came out of the gates fast, putting two runs on the board in the bottom of the first inning. SJSU starting pitcher Madison Aurin hit a two-run homer to draw first blood. It was all Cyclones from that point forward.
Kaylee Bosworth singled to lead-off the inning, followed by a Talyn Lewis walk. Nychole Antillon loaded the bases with a bunt for a base hit to get the ISU offense jump-started. Sally Woolpert then stepped to the plate and laced a two-RBI single up the middle, scoring Bosworth and Lewis to tie the game at 2-2. Kaila Konz gave Iowa State the lead with a single through the left side, bringing Antillon in to score. Hannah Carter later notched a sac fly, scoring Woolpert to put Iowa State ahead 4-2.
San Jose State capitalized on an Iowa State error to get one run back in the home half of the second, but the Cyclone bats stayed hot in the third.
Bosworth led-off the inning with a solo bomb to left field, her third of the weekend. She leads the team with three dingers on the season. Carter notched another RBI on a single up the middle to plate Woolpert. Taylor Nearad then laced a two-RBI double to right-center, scoring Carter and Kaila Konz to extend the ISU advantage to 8-3.
Antillon added to her big day with an RBI single to left field in the fourth, as junior Sydney Stites raced around to score. Williams, Bosworth and Kirsten Caudle all tacked on RBI base hits in the top of the fifth inning, giving the Cyclones a 12-3 lead, and a chance at the run-rule victory.
San Jose State scored once in the bottom of the fifth, but relief pitcher Brianna Weilbacher slammed to door shut with three-straight outs to end the game.
Weilbacher got the win for the Cyclones, pitching the last 3.0 innings. The senior gave up one run on four hits with three strikeouts to improve to 2-2 on the season. Starter Savannah Sanders pitched 2.0 innings, giving up three runs (one unearned) on just two hits.
Iowa State will head to the Aquafina Invitational in Gainesville, Fla. Feb. 23-25. The Cyclones open the tournament vs. Georgia Southern on Friday at 8 a.m. CT.