Bruins does it all for No. 6/6 Texas Softball
Feb. 16, 2013
Alex Hubbard, TexasSports.com
HOUSTON - A grand slam in one game and a complete game shutout in another. Not a bad day for senior Kim Bruins. Her performance at the plate and in the circle helped the No. 6/6 Texas Softball team earn two victories on day one of the Hilton Houston Plaza Invitational.
“I love how she competes. I’ve said that all along,” head coach Connie Clark said of Bruins. “She’s a tremendous competitor regardless of whether she’s in the circle, at the plate or at first base.”
In Friday morning’s game against DePaul, Bruins showed her prowess at the plate, connecting on her second career grand slam in the top of the fourth inning. The long ball extended the Texas lead from 9-0 to 13-0.
“Sometimes I want to swing at everything. I told myself to take until I got a strike,” Bruins said of the at-bat. “I just swung at my pitch and thankfully it went out.”
In Friday’s second game, versus Illinois, Bruins started in the circle. For the second time in as many pitching appearances this season, Bruins stepped up and tossed a complete game shutout in Texas’ 3-0 win. Against the Fighting Illini, Bruins gave up only two hits in seven innings while striking out five.
Like her teammates, Bruins is quick to praise those around her for her successes on the diamond.
“I have trust in my defense and I know that they will make plays,” Bruins said. “That helps me relax and get out of jams.”
In seven games this season, Bruins is hitting .381 (8-of-21) with a team-high two home runs and squad third-best seven runs batted in. The two homers already match her season high and her batting average is over 100 points higher than her career average.
In the circle, she is 2-0 with a 0.00 earned run average, 11 strikeouts and only two walks in 12 innings pitched. Bruins is on pace to shatter her single-season career high of seven wins.
Bruins believes slowing the game down has been a major reason for her improvement as an all-around player.
“Sometimes I can get too rushed or too amped up. So I have to remember to slow down and take my time,” Bruins said.
The rest of the Longhorns see Bruins as a leader and are confident in her abilities.
“We never worry with Kim,” junior center fielder Brejae Washington said. “She has this attitude of: ‘I’ve got this’. We are really confident that she will get the job done.”
On this Texas team, Bruins epitomizes the versatility the club is built around.
“You get the best of both worlds,” Washington said of Bruins. “You know she will handle her business at the plate and in the circle.”