Lady Bears use long ball to defeat Texas Tech

Junior Gia Rodoni pitches with a runner on first base in a 2-0 shutout on March 20 against North Texas. Jessica Hubble | Multimedia Editor

By Max Calderone | Sports Writer

No. 16 Baylor softball (22-9) scored nine runs over the final two innings in a comeback victory over Texas Tech (21-16) on Friday in Lubbock.

Sophomore first baseman Goose McGlaun hit two of the team’s five total home runs in the ballgame to move her total to 11 on the season and give the Lady Bears a 12-8 victory.

Junior pitcher Gia Rodoni didn’t have her best stuff, giving up two runs in the bottom of the first and being chased after just 2 2/3 innings of work. Texas Tech’s junior first baseman Jessica Hartwell did the damage with a two-run shot to right to open the scoring, her first of three home runs in the game.

Baylor answered back in the top of the second when McGlaun singled in freshman pinch runner Alyssa Avalos who was running for senior designated player Shelby Friudenberg. But the Lady Bears fell behind 4-1 after the bottom half of the third inning when Hartwell drove her second homer over the wall.

Baylor scored two in the top of the fourth to pull within one run thanks to back-to-back dingers by Friudenberg and McGlaun. The Red Raiders maintained their lead with one more in the bottom half and led 5-3 through four complete innings.

After a scoreless fifth, the Lady Bears rallied in the top of the sixth inning, sparked by an RBI single from Friudenberg that scored senior center fielder Jessie Scroggins. McGlaun followed with her second home run of the game in as many at-bats, this time a three-run shot to put Baylor ahead 7-5.

Consecutive singles by sophomore right fielder Maddison Kettler and sophomore shortstop Taylor Ellis kept the line moving for senior third baseman Caitlin Charlton, who knocked in one more with a single through the right side of the infield. Texas Tech was forced to turn to its bullpen to get out of the jam, trailing 8-5.

Baylor brought on junior pitcher Regan Green after Rodoni’s short outing, but even she struggled to keep the ball in the yard as Red Raiders’ freshman pinch hitter Kelcy Leach homered to bring the score to 8-6 in the bottom of the sixth. Texas Tech added one more to pull within one run before the Lady Bears rallied once again in the seventh.

To start the top of the final inning, Scroggins led off with a solo shot to right field, putting Baylor ahead 9-7 and Ellis later hit a three-run home run to give the Lady Bears some insurance. Green was able to finish off the Red Raiders, although giving up another home run to Hartwell, her third of the game, before Baylor clinched its 22nd win of the season.

Baylor and Texas Tech will continue the three-game series tomorrow with game two beginning at 4 p.m. in Lubbock. Game three is set for a 12 p.m. first pitch on Sunday.