After a 2-1 series loss to Iowa State, head coach Connie Clark told her players they had a simple choice — either keep working or give up.
Texas responded with wins by scores of 10-0 and 2-0 in a doubleheader sweep of Kansas this weekend. The Longhorns weren’t ready to give up.
“I thought it was a great day for us,” Clark said. “I think back to the meeting on Tuesday, the team meeting before a pretty rigorous practice going ‘hey, we’ve got to take every opportunity we have in front of us the next few weeks to several weeks depending on what we make of it.’”
Redshirt sophomore pitcher Erica Wright threw her fourth one-hitter of the season with two strikeouts and two walks, allowing the Longhorns to get to work on offense in the 10-0 victory.
The Longhorns scored five runs in the second inning. Sophomore right fielder Bekah Alcozer started the contest firing her second home run in two games to put up a 2-0 lead. Three RBI doubles by freshman right fielder Kaitlyn Washington, freshman catcher Taylor Ellsworth and junior catcher Randel Leahy drove the score up 5-0.
Texas closed game one in the fifth inning. Senior outfielder Stephanie Wong shot a double to left center for a 7-0 score. Senior Devon Tunning’s RBI single put her on base for Washington’s second RBI double of the day, 9-0. Senior Celina Felix topped it off with her first homerun of the season to put the Longhorns at 10-0.
To avoid a run-rule, the Jayhawks needed three runs at the bottom of the fifth. Kansas walked to put one on base, but a grounder and fly-outs closed the game.
“I thought we really got on a roll in the first game,” Clark said. “High energy, but most importantly our execution today from the batter’s box, the pitcher’s circle and certainly on defense, especially in game one the defense was significant.”
Senior pitcher Tiarra Davis struck out a season-high nine batters in a complete game, limiting the Jayhawks to only three hits.
Despite blasting 13 hits for a 10-run score earlier in the day, the Longhorns still had fire left in them.
The Longhorns had two runners on base in the third, off an Alcozer walk and Davis single, but a failed bunt attempt would leave them scoreless until the fifth.
Senior first baseman Kelli Hanzel singled and Davis walked to put two runners on base for the Longhorns. Wong followed with a RBI double for a 1-0 score.
The final score was sealed in the seventh. Hanzel and Alcozer fired consecutive singles and Wong walked to load the bases. Senior designated player Mickenzi Krpec shot a pinch-hit drive to the left for a sac-fly 2-0 advantage.
Kansas put runners on first and third via a triple and walk to threaten a score, but Davis closed it out, forcing a fly-out to center.
The final game of the series was canceled due to weather conditions. Texas now stands at 28-20 and 6-8 in Big 12 play.
“We can’t be satisfied with the series sweep, it’s game to game to game.” Clark said. “If we get an opportunity we need to take advantage of it.”