No. 8 Softball completes sweep, rolls past Kansas, 10-2
March 27, 2011
AUSTIN, Texas – The eighth-ranked Texas Softball team extended its season-best winning streak to 12 games as it completed its Big 12-opening weekend sweep of Kansas, Sunday afternoon with a 10-2 run-rule victory. The win improved the Longhorns to 28-3 on the year and 2-0 in Big 12 action, while the Jayhawks dropped to 26-7 overall and 0-4 in league play.
Sophomore righthander Blaire Luna (17-2) notched the complete-game victory for the Horns, allowing two runs on four hits, walking three and fanning six in 5.0 innings of work. Jayhawks’ starter Allie Clark (10-4) suffered the loss, tossing 1.2 innings in two separate stints, while allowing seven runs on six hits and walking five.
Freshman centerfielder Brejae Washington headlined Texas’ offense for the second-straight day, going 2-for-2 with four RBI, a triple and a double. Sophomore rightfielder Taylor Hoagland homered in her only official plate appearance, but tallied two bases-loaded walks and scored three times.
In the second, Texas used three hits and took advantage of two Kansas miscues to widen the margin to 6-2. Junior designated player Courtney Craig led off the frame with a single and moved to second on a botched fielder’s choice. A single through the left side by freshman shortstop Taylor Thom loaded the bases and a walk by Hoagland scored one run before a three-run triple by Washington gave UT a 5-2 lead. Junior first baseman Lexy Bennett and senior catcher Amy Hooks reloaded the bases with a pair of walks before a KU throwing error on a fielder’s choice plated Bennett to put Texas ahead, 6-2.
The Longhorns added a single tally in the third when Hoagland was issued a bases-empty, two-out intentional walk to start UT’s rally. She promptly stole second and raced home on Washington’s RBI double to left centerfield.
Texas tacked on two more runs in the fourth, using a bases-loaded RBI single by senior second baseman Raygan Feight to push the first across and a bases-loaded walk by Hoagland to push the lead to 9-2.
The Horns closed out the game via run-rule in the fifth when Bennett and pinch hitter Karina Scott drew a pair of walks to set the table for Craig’s game-ending RBI single.
Texas returns to action on Wednesday, March 30 when it travels to Texas State. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m. Central.
On the Longhorns opening Big 12 play with a weekend sweep: Kansas is a much-improved team. They have a fairly new coaching staff. We talked after and it’s frustrating [for Kansas]. They want to win and they want to win right now, like we all do. It’s a process for them, but I’ll tell you that they are much improved over last year and I thought they competed well. They are a solid club. With the scores we saw come up over the Big 12 yesterday, it’s anybody’s race. I’ll be absolutely floored if anyone goes through this conference undefeated this year. It’s going to be a very exciting matchup week in and week out.
Sophomore rightfielder Taylor Hoagland
On what it means to open Big 12 play with a sweep of the Jayhawks: Kansas is a lot better than they have been in the past. You have to give it to them. They came out here strong, they came out here chattering, but we came out strong and we were ready to play. It’s a nice start, that’s for sure. We’re here to play and we’re here to defend our title.
Junior first baseman Lexy Bennett
On what went right offensively this weekend: I think we saw most of their pitchers yesterday. I think it was picking good pitches and hitting, being confident at the plate and doing what we know how to do and what we do best.
Freshman centerfielder Brejae Washington
On her hitting today: I was feeling really comfortable coming from a great game yesterday. My whole mindset was just to put the ball in play. When I put the ball on the ground, it always gives them a hard play. I wanted to go with the pitches I was given and just do what I do.