Zias, Highlands split in Lady Buff Classic

CNJ staff

CANYON, Texas — Freshman Lizzy Velasquez hit a two-run single in the top of the eighth as Eastern New Mexico University edged New Mexico Highlands 6-5 on Friday for a split against the Cowgirls in the Lady Buff Classic softball tournament, hosted by West Texas A&M.

Highlands won the first game 10-0 on a two-hitter by Jenelle Klassen (2-0), both hits coming off the bat of Velasquez.

ENMU (4-5) took a 4-0 lead in the top of the second in the nightcap as Ke VonSchriltz had an infield RBI single, Melanie Alderette delivered a two-run single to left and Savannah Sanchez hit an RBI double. The Cowgirls (3-4) chipped away and pulled even in the sixth on left fielder Alisah Perry’s one-out solo homer, chasing ENMYU freshman Katie Ramsey.

Freshman Amy Smith (2-2), who took the loss in the first game, worked 2 2/3 innings in the finale for the win. She gave up a two-out RBI single to opposing pitcher Ericka Wieck (0-4), but catcher Aurelia Sandoval threw Wieck out trying to steal second to end the game.

Smith, who started the game at first base, and Chavez each went 3-for-4 as the Zias outhit NMHU 12-10. Shortstop Brittany Potter hit her second homer of the day and fifth of the season for Highlands, a two-run shot in the fifth.

Potter capped a six-run Cowgirls fourth with a two-run homer in the opener, making it 8-0, and Highlands went on to end the game after five innings on the run rule. Perry, batting out of the No. 9 hole, went 3-for-3 with three doubles, three RBIs and two runs scored for the Cowgirls, who had 10 hits.

Velasquez had a double in the third and an infield single in the fifth for the only hits off Klassen, who walked three and struck out three.

The Zias are slated to meet Colorado Mines in an 11 a.m. (MST) twin bill today, then complete the event on Sunday with games at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. (MST) against Regis College.