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ISU Women's Softball

Game Recap: Softball | 2/8/2024 9:09:00 PM | Jonathan Match, ISU Media Relations
Game Recap: Softball | 2/8/2024 9:09:00 PM | Jonathan Match, ISU Media Relations

Bengals Dominate in Season Opening 5-0 Win over Toreros

POCATELLO, Idaho – The Idaho State Bengals opened the 2024 season with a 5-0 shutout victory over the San Diego Toreros in San Diego, Calif., Thursday afternoon.
The Bengals pick up their 2nd all-time win over the Toreros and the first since the 2014 season.

Postgame Remarks
"That was a great way to start the season," remarked Head Coach Andrew Rich. "We played clean in every phase of the games and played very aggressive, which is the style we want to play."

-On Ava Brown
"Ava really set the tone with the first pitch leadoff triple. That got everyone going and then she really opened things up with the home run. Great to see her get off to a good start, especially in the leadoff spot."
-On Taylor Fitzgerald
"Taylor threw a great game. She stuck to the game plan, attacked, and let her defense work behind her. We knew Taylor had a lot of experience and would really help and good to see her start her Bengal career with a shutout."

How it Happened
If there was a way to set the tone early, the Bengals accomplished it in San Diego Thursday. In the first at bat of the year for the Orange and Black, Ava Brown hammered the first pitch of the season to the outfield and sped around the bases for a year-opening triple.

Angelica Cano then stepped up and hit a single to center, scoring Brown for the first RBI of the year.

In the fourth, Paige Simpson started the inning off with a single down the line to reach, she was followed by Gracie Smith who put a bunt down and sped safely through first.

Ava Brown then stepped up to the plate and hit a moonshot over the left field wall for the first home run of the year, a three-run blast that put the Bengals up 4-0 in the 4th.

The next inning, Simpson singled and once again, Ava Brown put up an extra-base hit that scored Simpson and extended the Bengal lead to 5-0.

Bengal newcomer Taylor Fitzgerald got her first start of the year in the circle for the Bengals and the Graduate Transfer from UC Davis went all seven innings. Fitzgerald fanned four San Diego batters while allowing just five hits and three walks.

Fitzgerald forced seven flyouts and 10 groundouts as the Bengal defense took care of business and put away the Toreros to secure the 5-0 victory.


  • The Bengals scored five runs on 11 hits in the game, marking the first double-digit hit performance of the 2024 season.
  • Ava Brown had a monster day, going three-of-four, scoring two runs, four RBI's  and three extra base hits. Brown hit her 2nd career triple and 6th career home-run.
  • The Bengals had a good day fielding, with 21 putouts and zero errors. Angelica Cano had nine at first base followed by three each from Brown and Olivia Robison.
  • This is the first shutout since 4/29/23 when the Bengals earned a 1-0 victory over Sacramento State, and the first non-conference shutout since 2/18/23 when they defeated UIC 8-0.
  • This is the 2nd opening win shutout in the previous four seasons. Previous win was 7-0 over Nevada in 2021.