Evans Dazzles, Mihalic Dominates In RV TU’s Sweep Of No. 17 Yotes
GLENDALE, Ariz. – A spectacular performance from Maddi Evans, and continued offensive brilliance from Kristin Mihalic, led RV Taylor to two impressive victories over No. 17 College of Idaho. Evans’ masterful outing carried the Trojans to a 3-1 triumph in game one, before a timely home run from Mihalic helped Taylor secure a 5-3 win in game two.
Since the start of last season, the Trojans have compiled a 9-2 record over teams in the Top-25 or receiving votes. In those contests, Taylor has a plus-29 run differential.
Mihalic put together two dominant outings against the Yotes (0-2), finishing 4-for-7 on the day, including a pair of home runs, and driving in five of Taylor’s eight runs. After TU’s first six games, Mihalic leads the team in batting average (.588), hits (10), home runs (three), runs batted in (nine), slugging percentage (1.118), and on-base percentage (.667). Caitlyn Grim also had a strong day at the plate, hitting 4-for-6 with a double and an RBI. The sophomore is hitting .500 with nine hits and five RBI after the Trojans’ first six contests, all of which rank second on the team.
Mihalic provided all the offense for Taylor in the opener, with all three runs coming in the first inning. After Emma West opened the frame with a single and Lauren Kanai reached on a walk, Mihalic launched a three-run shot to left-center field, giving the Trojans a lead they would not relinquish.
Armed with a three-run cushion, Evans (2-0) put together her second gem in as many starts. The Fairmount native and former Madison-Grant standout pitched all seven innings, allowing just two hits and one run while collecting a career-high 13 strikeouts for the Purple and Gold. After three starts, Evans has compiled a 0.88 earned run average, giving up just two earned runs and seven hits while striking out a team-leading 27 batters, 23 of which have come in her last two appearances.
The Yotes threatened in the sixth inning, scoring one run and loading the bases with one out. However, a strikeout from Evans, and a stellar defensive play from Kara Tucker at second base for the third out, ended the Yotes’ comeback bid.
College of Idaho grabbed an early 2-0 advantage in the bottom of the third inning in game two, but back-to-back, two-out RBI singles from Evans and Grim tied the contest in the top of the fourth. Mihalic gave TU the lead for good in the fifth frame, crushing a two-run shot to right field to give the Trojans a 4-2 advantage.
The Yotes got a run back in their half of the fifth, but Taylor regained its two-run lead in the sixth. Grim led off the inning with a double, and later scored on a College of Idaho throwing error.
Cassy Lewis shut the door in the final two innings, allowing just one baserunner to record her first save of the season. Lewis pitched three solid frames, giving up just one hit and one earned run.
Kanai (1-1) earned the win, giving up two hits and two earned runs while striking out three.
Taylor (4-2) will conclude its Arizona road trip tomorrow afternoon with another doubleheader against Ottawa University (0-2). First pitch is scheduled for 2 pm.