By Cody Soto
The No. 10 Baylor Bears used a strong pitching effort from junior Heather Stearns and an exciting second inning to put away Stephen F. Austin 3-0 in the championship game of the 2015 Fairfield Inn & Suites North Getterman Classic on Sunday afternoon.
With the win, the Bears captured their ninth tournament title out of the 14-year history of the Getterman Classic. Baylor went a perfect 5-0 en route to the title, knocking off Wichita State, along with SFA and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi twice each.
The Bears faced off against the Shockers Friday afternoon in their season opener to unveil head coach Glenn Moore’s primarily new squad. Stearns had seven strikeouts and allowed seven hits in her time on the pitching mound against Wichita State.
After Baylor started out the game with a 3-0 lead, things got a little out of hand in the top of the third inning where Wichita State had four runs to take the lead. Baylor answered them with one run in the third inning and three in the bottom of the fourth to take the 7-4 win.
Stephen F. Austin
Baylor then faced pitcher Callee Guffey and SFA in the second leg of the doubleheader. The Bears kicked things off with an early 3-0 lead in the top of the second, but the Lady Jacks cut the lead to one when they scored two runs in the fourth to stay in the game.
Baylor scored twice in the sixth inning to push the lead, but ultimately it was the five-run inning in the seventh to doom the Lady Jacks. SFA was held scoreless in the bottom of the seventh inning, and Baylor ran away with an 11-3 win on Friday night.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
The Bears turned right back around less than 24 hours later and faced Texas A&M-Corpus Christi twice on Saturday afternoon in an effort to head back to the championship game.
Baylor used a three-run third inning and two runs in the fourth inning to give Baylor the 6-3 win heading into bracket play. However, less than 30 minutes later, the competition stiffened, and both teams were held scoreless in the first four innings at Getterman Stadium.
The Bears busted things wide open as they used two runs in the fifth inning and a score in the sixth to defeat the Islanders 3-0 and advance to the championship on Sunday.
Baylor played a tight game with SFA in the title game, but the Bears capitalized on several Lady Jack errors to score three runs in the second inning. That ultimately decided the game. Stearns pitched a stellar game on Sunday, striking out 11 opponents and only allowing one hit in seven innings.
Five players were named to the all-tournament team: Stearns, junior Linsey Hays, freshman Kendall Potts, junior Sarah Smith, and senior Kaitlyn Thumann.
Next, the Bears (5-0) head to Natchitoches, La. to play in the NSU Demon Invitational on Feb. 14-15. Baylor plays both Jackson State and Northwestern State twice during the two-day tournament.