WRAP IT UP
Utah State softball concluded the 2018 season with an 18-34 record. The Aggies tied for eighth in the final Mountain West standings, going 7-17 against conference opponents.
AMONG THE BEST
Senior catcher Brina Buttacavoli represented the Aggies on the all-Mountain West teams, as she earned second-team honors. This is Buttacavoli’s first-career all-conference honor. Utah State has now had at least one player earn all-Mountain West honors since joining the league for the 2014 season.
THE RBI RULER
Senior catcher Brina Buttacavoli led the Aggies with 44 RBIs this season, the most of any season in her collegiate career. Her 44 RBIs tie for second on the single-season record list, matching Victoria Saucedo’s total from the 2016 season. Buttacavoli recorded a career-best four RBIs in four games of her career, including two times this season. Buttacavoli concluded her collegiate career with 83 RBIs.
WALK THIS WAY
Sophomore outfielder Riley Plogger drew a team-high 27 walks this season. Her 27 walks are tied for second on the USU single-season record list and are the most by a Utah State player since 1993, when Jennifer Power was walked 26 times. Power holds the single-season record with 41 walks in 1994.
A GOOD START
For the second year in a row, a freshman led the Utah State pitching staff. Delaney Hull posted a 2.66 ERA as she went 9-9 on the year with 28 appearances in the circle. Hull pitched 134.1 innings, tallying 85 strikeouts and walking 32 batters.
BRB, WE’RE RUNNING AROUND THE BASES
Senior catcher Brina Buttacavoli, sophomore outfielder Riley Plogger and junior first baseman Bailee Trapp were the heavy hitters for the Aggies this season, combining for 26 of Utah State’s 38 home runs. Buttacavoli led the group with 11 home runs, while Trapp and Plogger have hit eight and seven, respectively. Each of the three players have more than doubled their career home run totals throughout the course of the 2018 season. Additionally, the three hit 27 of the team’s 49 doubles.
Utah State continues to successfully steal bases, as it led the Mountain West with 79 steals during the 2018 season. Senior outfielder Jazmin Clarke led the Aggies and ranked second in the Mountain West with 28 stolen bases, followed closely by freshman outfielder Leah Molina, who had 23 on the year.
Clarke ended her USU career with a commanding lead on the all-time stolen base record list at Utah State, as she had 85 steals in her career. Clarke currently holds the top three positions on the single-season record list, setting the record with 31 in 2017 and tallying 25 as a sophomore in 2016.
THE WALK-OFF LIFE
Senior third baseman Amee Aarhus two walk-off hits this season. Aarhus hit a walk-off home run to give the Aggies an 11-10 victory over Nevada on March 31, followed by a walk-off single to bring a runner in and give USU the 3-2 win over San José State on May 5.
Sophomore pitcher Kellie White struck out her 100th batter of the season in the series finale against San José State. She ended the season with 107 strikeouts, topping her freshman season total of 93. She is the first Utah State pitcher to throw more than 100 strikeouts in a season since 2015. Noelle Johnson (2013-16) holds the single-season strikeout record, tallying 2018 in 2014.
TAKING ONE TO TAKE FIRST
Senior third baseman Amee Aarhus was hit by a pitch a team-high nine times this season. Those nine are the most a USU player has taken since 2016, when Noelle Johnson took 12 pitches. According to available research, the 12 are the single-season school record, held by Johnson and Kelley Kaneshiro. Aarhus was hit by a pitch 13 times in her career, which is tied for seventh on the single-season record list. Kaneshiro holds the career hit-by-pitch record, taking 36 pitches over her four seasons.
AIN’T LIFE GRAND?
Utah State batters hit two grand slams this season, coming off the bats of senior catcher Brina Buttacavoli and sophomore catcher/designated player Allanah Alvarado. Buttacavoli hit the second grand slam of her career in a loss to Boise State on March 18. Alvarado had the first of her career in a win at BYU on April 25. This is the first time Utah State has had two grand slams in a season since 2010, when Nicole Tindall and Shasta Tyteca each hit one. Additionally, Buttacavoli and Tyteca are the only two Aggie softball players to hit multiple grand slams in their career since at least 2005.
ENDING THE STREAK
Utah State defeated in-state rival BYU, 4-2, on April 25, marking the first win against the Cougars since April 4, 2006. Prior to that game, the Cougars had won 17 consecutive games against the Aggies. All-time, BYU leads the series, 42-33, dating back to the 1976 season.
HIT ME WITH YOUR BEST SHOT
Utah State recorded double-digit hits in 14 games this season, including a five-game streak from Feb. 23-25. The Aggies had a season-high 19 hits in the win against Buffalo. The 19 hits are the most since the Aggies put up 20 hits in a win against Valparaiso on March 11, 2016.
YOU SAY GOODBYE
Utah State softball sent off its five-member senior class at the conclusion of the 2018 season. Third baseman Amee Aarhus, catcher Brina Buttacavoli, outfielder Jazmin Clarke, outfielder Emily Hunter and pitcher Jordyn McCracken all celebrated their collegiate careers on Senior Day against San José State, and all appeared in the season finale at San Diego State. Two players have announced their intent to transfer for the 2019 season, and the Aggies will also have to replace its assistant coaches, as Windy Thees and Nate Miller are both pursuing other opportunities.
I SAY HELLO
Utah State has signed nine players to its roster for the 2019 season. The Aggies will welcome Kenzie Bolin (San Marcos, Calif./San Marcos HS), Ryann Holmes (Queen Creek, Ariz./Queen Creek HS/Mesa CC), Gabriella Jimenez (Sacramento, Calif./C.K. McClatchy HS), Erin Kuba (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/Jefferson HS/Indian Hills CC), Chloe Nightingale (Camarillo, Calif./Adolfo Camarillo HS), Lexi Orozco (San Marcos, Calif./San Marcos HS), Hannah Sisul (Oregon City, Ore./La Salle Catholic College Prep), Emily Tidd (Temecula, Calif./Temecula Valley HS) and Kapri Toone (Tremonton, Utah/Bear River HS) to Logan this fall.
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