By Krista Pirtle
After coming off a big week, there was some worry that the Baylor Lady Bears softball team might let up on the University of Texas at Arlington on Tuesday night.
That was not the case, as the Lady Bears went on to blank the Mavericks, 5-0.
“We talked about [not letting up] before the game,” head coach Glenn Moore said. “It’s kind of human nature and you see it so often; they have a great high and they come back and let up. I was very proud of the effort we had today, and we came out and took control of the game right away. We kind of fell asleep offensively toward the end. I’d like to see more aggression early and more fight late in the at bat.”
Sophomore Kathy Shelton filled the one spot in the lineup, usually reserved for junior Kayce Walker, and went 4 for 4 with two runs, two stolen bases and one RBI.
“Just being in the one spot you really need to set the table for the team,” Shelton said. “He really stresses that to me and Kayce [in order] to score early. He puts stress on scoring early and scoring first. Being in the one spot you just have to set the tone.”
Baylor started its scoring in the first inning when freshman Holly Holl came up to bat with the bases loaded, singling to right field and scoring Shelton. Next up, senior KJ Freeland dropped a ball in shallow right field, scoring Walker.
In the second, Walker came to the plate with Lady Bears on first and second and scored both runners on her single to right center field.
Sophomore Kelsi Kettler scored the final Baylor run off a hit to left field by Shelton.
The Lady Bears couldn’t seem to figure out pitcher Callie Collins, who entered in the fourth inning, and could not get runners around the bases.
Collins usually starts for the Mavericks and had a 9-3 record and 1.23 ERA entering Tuesday.
“When you see a good pitcher, especially when they come in the middle of the game like that, it’s not unusual for a pitcher to shut you down for a little while,” Moore said. “That’s why when you see them at the beginning you fight hard to extend those at bats to slow her down and in the fifth inning you get on her. But we didn’t have that long a time to get on her, so we have to figure it out and put the ball in more play like we did earlier.”
The pitching staff for Baylor did well also, as sophomore Courtney Repka and freshman Liz Paul held the Mavericks scoreless.
Repka threw five innings, allowing four hits and striking out three. Paul came on to finish the game with three strikeouts and two walks in the final two innings.
“[Repka] threw some good pitches with a feisty little lineup that we’re facing,” Moore said. “She grew from this and we need her to continue to get better.
Moore thought Paul’s pitching had batters fooled as well.
“[Paul’s] rise ball’s is pretty believable, and she had them swing and miss at a couple of those,” Moore said. “ I think every time we can get those guys on the field and not bring in [Whitney] Canion is a positive.”
The Lady Bears will finish up 11 games in 13 days with a doubleheader at North Texas starting at 4 p.m. today.