More has happened to the Longhorns in these past three games than in the first 34 games. Three losses in the last three games isn’t what they expected, and as the No. 5 ranked team travels to Kansas for a three-game series, they definitely wanted a better start to April.
The Texas team, now 32-5, have scored only six runs in their past three while having a little bit of trouble on the mound. As they travel further north to Lawrence, home of the Jayhawks, the Longhorns look to put an end this slump. They are going to have a challenge doing so, however, as their away record against Kansas isn’t in their favor (6-10).
The Jayhawks are 24-12 on the season but only 3-9 in the Big 12 Conference. The team has been having a trouble in their last run of games as they have dropped six of their last seven. Two of their big leaders will try to shut down the Longhorns and prove their spot in the conference. Alicia Pille holds a 2.13 ERA with 137 strikeouts and holds her opponents to only a .205 batting average. At the plate, Maggie Hull leads the Jayhawks with six home runs, 26 RBI and a .388 batting average.
Texas, while not playing up to its standards recently, is second in the nation in batting average, .361. Junior Taylor Hoagland looks to lead the team back on its feet as she attempts to tie the Texas home run record. She is one shy of Amy Hooks (2008-2011) at 35 home runs.
The Longhorns still hold their positive look on the rest of the season, however. Head coach Connie Clark looks to keep the team’s spirits up and have them finish strong.
“This final stretch is where you really want to see things come together,” Clark said. “We told the team that this is the time where we have to stay close together as a team and deal with adversity. I feel really good about this group and believe this will stick together.”
Texas looks to get back on their feet in these next few games but the Jayhawks are trying to stop that. With very few games left on the season, every game counts and every game is a step closer to the ultimate goal of a long run in the NCAA Tournament.
Printed on Friday, April 13, 2012 as: After starting 32-2, Longhorns trying to end three-game skid