By DeShaun Hartley
The Texas State Softball team (19-16, 8-4 in Sun-Belt Conference) traveled down the road to take on in state rival, #11 ranked Texas Longhorns (32-8, 5-2 in Big 12).The Bobcats entered this game on a nine-game winning streak and would look to knock off one of the top ranked teams in the country, but the Longhorns had a different plan in mind as they got out to an early 2-0 lead off of a blasted two-run homer from Miranda Ellis in the first inning. After the lead was gained the Longhorns never looked back, holding on to it for the duration of the game. The Bobcats lack of offense caused them to drop their first matchup since mid march. With the astounding pitching performance from Shealyn O’Leary and stellar hitting all-around, the team in orange from Austin would run rule the Bobcats 10-0 at the bottom of the sixth.
Krista Jacobs (2-4) would get her sixth start for the maroon and gold. The senior from Magnolia, Texas would pitch five innings giving up four runs and 10 hits against a longhorn team whose batting average ranks 18th in the nation. Days after her pitching debut, sophomore Maria Flores stepped into the circle for her second straight appearance of the season. During Flores’ stint on the mound, she faced two batters before allowing a three-run homer to Bekah Alcozer. Soon after that ace, Meagan King would come in to try to get this game back in control, but before you could look up Mary Iakopo would slam her second Home run of the night, allowing Texas to score their 10th run. This marks the sixth time the Longhorns would score 10 or more runs a game this season.
Just last week Freshman Pitcher Shealyn O’Leary (12-1) threw the 10th perfect game in Longhorn history. O’Leary continued her dominance by pitching a two-hit shutout against the Bobcats. The impressive stats don’t end there as the Longhorn retired the first nine visiting batters of the game.
For Texas State only two players were allowed to make contact with the ball and those hits came from batting leader Christiana McDowell and power hitter ArieAnn Bell. McDowell collected her sixth double of the year off of a fly ball that landed right over the third baseman’s head. Seeing the play you would’ve expected her to be out but the speedster extended the play all the way around first base, sliding into second safely. After a Haleigh Davis walk, Bell stepped up to the plate and ripped the ball right through left and center field. This was the first hit of the game for the Bobcats. Head coach Ricci Woodard challenges her team to come out with “more confidence” before the next series in conference play this weekend.
The Bobcats will look to grow from this loss before heading back home to Bobcat Stadium this weekend to play an Appalachian State team who is currently sitting in second place during Sun Belt play. Be sure to catch some Texas State Softball at 5:30 p.m. this Friday.
Featured image by DeShaun Hartley.