Western Kentucky’s softball team dropped a 5-4 road decision to UT Arlington on Tuesday in Arlington, Texas.

Maddie Bowlds and Brylee Hage each tallied multi-hit performances in WKU’s midweek game at UT Arlington to open the Hilltoppers’ spring break road trip.

WKU (20-5) will return to Conference USA play this weekend at preseason favorite North Texas (19-5). UT Arlington improved to 12-13 on the year with Tuesday night’s victory.

The Hilltoppers’ Jordan Thomas led off the game with a walk. Bowlds followed with her first of two hits on the day – a bunt single – before Hage sent a base hit back up the middle to load the bases. Kendall Smith followed with an RBI single to score Thomas before Taylor Sanders drew an RBI walk to plate Bowlds and give the Tops a 2-0 advantage.

UT Arlington answered in the bottom of the frame with four runs.

Both starting pitchers’ days were be done by the top of the second. Kelsey Aikey (10-3) took he loss for the Hilltoppers after being relieved by Shelby Nunn while the Mavs’ second pitcher, Allie Gardiner, earned the win.

With two outs in the top of the second, Bowlds connected for her second hit of the game – a home run to right field that cut WKU’s deficit to one at 4-3. The homer was the first of the season for Bowlds and the second of her career.

UT Arlington added its fourth and fifth hits of the game in the bottom of the second and got the run back for a 5-3 advantage. Nunn retired 13 of the final 14 UTA batters, allowing just one more base hit in the game.

WKU battled back again in the top of the sixth as Hage got things going with her second single of the game. Smith drew a walk before Taylor Davis reached on an error in a pinch-hit appearance that allowed Hage to score. From there, a caught stealing, fielder’s choice and ground out ended the Hilltopper threat.

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