By Nathan Keil | Sports Writer
No. 13 Baylor softball pushed its current winning streak to eight games with a three game sweep against Iowa State over the weekend. The Lady Bears beat the Lady Cyclones 5-1 on Friday, 7-0 on Saturday and 9-6 on Sunday.
On Friday, senior pitcher Kelsee Selman continued her strong senior campaign in the circle for the Lady Bears. She went the distance, allowing one run on four hits to the Lady Cyclones’ offense. She walked two and struck out 10.
Freshman infielder Taylor Ellis got the Lady Bears on the board in the second inning with a run scoring double. They added three more in the third and one in the fourth. Sophomore outfielder Kyla Walker stole home, senior infielder Lindsey Cargill brought in a run on a double and Ellis brought in another on a groundout.
Baylor head coach Glenn Moore expects a lot of Ellis both at the plate and in the field and said that her hard work is paying big dividends for the Lady Bears.
“Every game you see the kid grow. She just plays hard,” Moore said. “I was worried about her earlier playing outside her head when she gets frustrated, and I think she got through that quickly and is playing very mature ball right now. I certainly like what she’s doing. We’re asking a lot out of her. Offensively, her batting average is climbing.”
Senior infielder Ari Hawkins’ double in the fourth brought in the final run for Baylor.
In Saturday’s 5-0 win, sophomore pitcher Gia Rodoni was equally if not more so impressive than Selman on Friday. Rodoni allowed just five hits and no walks in pitching the shutout for Baylor. She also struck out eight.
Rodoni said that she has been working to set lofty goals for herself on the mound and these goals helped her focus on a strong effort against Iowa State.
“Setting high goals and expecting that out of myself that I can do it. Setting the bar real high and trying to get that every game,” Rodoni said. “We knew even last year when we played them, they’re an aggressive team so we came into today knowing that’s their strength. We just had to attack them and we knew we were going to be fine.”
The bats going for the Lady Bears in the second. Cargill got the two out rally started with a triple to left field before stealing home for the second consecutive game. Junior catcher Sydney Christensen then launched a two-run home run home run to left center following a walk to Ellis.
Christensen said she knew it had a chance in the wind but was just hoping to reach base.
“The wind was blowing in so hard, so I was saying, ‘Oh my gosh, please go over,’” Christensen said. “ I was just hoping for the best and I hit it pretty solid.”
The Lady Bears added two more in the fourth and fifth innings to complete the shutout and insure the Lady Bears of another series victory.
On Sunday, Moore turned the ball over to freshman pitcher Shelby McGlaun. McGlaun went the distance for Baylor, allowing six runs, although only three were earned on 10 hits. She walked two and struck out four.
After Iowa State took an early 1-0 lead in the second, Baylor responded with three unearned runs in the bottom half of the frame, taking advantage of two Iowa State miscues.
Christensen added a two run single in the third inning, McGlaun singled in a run in the fourth. Walker added another two run single in the fifth and freshman outfielder Maddison Kettler added a run on a single in the sixth, giving the Lady Bears a 9-3 lead.
Iowa State responded with three more runs before McGlaun closed the door and the series for good on the Lady Cyclones.
Baylor improves to 35-6 overall and 8-1 in Big 12 play. With the sweep, Baylor improved to 21-1 on the season at Getterman Stadium.
Cargill, the Big 12’s leading hitter tallied six hits in the series and tied Kelly Osburn’s program record 19-game hit streak. She will attempt to set the record when the Lady Bears travel to San Marcos to take on Texas State at 6 p.m. Wednesday.