Softball uses the long ball to power past Texas 7-5

Senior outfielder Jessie Scroggins connects on a base hit in a 2-0 win over North Texas on March 20. Jessica Hubble | Multimedia Journalist

By Nathan Keil | Sports Editor

Baylor softball used a five-run fifth inning and then held off a late Longhorn rally in knocking off Texas 7-5 Saturday night. The Lady Bears clinched the series win and the three seed in next week’s Big 12 Conference Tournament.

Baylor entered without a home run at home this season, but hit three against the Longhorns. Sophomore third baseman Goose McGlaun hit two while senior outfielder Jessie Scroggins hit her second home of the season.

McGlaun hit her 13th home run of the season to lead off the second inning. Senior catcher Carlee Wallace just missed going back-to-back, as her ball caromed off the very top of the wall in left as she settled for a double.

However, Wallace was stranded, as Baylor would take a 1-0 lead after two innings.

In the third, Texas would use small ball to tie the game.

After a one out single by sophomore infielder Malory Schattle, a pair of wild pitches from junior Gia Rodoni put her at third with one out. Another single put runners on the corners and Schattle trotted home on an RBI groundout.

Rodoni, who cruised through two innings, settled back in, retiring the side in order in the fourth and fifth innings.

It was in the bottom of the fifth, that the Baylor offense exploded.

With one out, freshman designated hitter Hannah Thompson and sophomore shortstop Taylor Ellis hit back-to-back doubles, putting Baylor in front 2-1.

Scroggins then hit a bullet over the right field for a two-run shot, chasing Texas starter junior Brooke Bolinger.

Facing redshirt junior Erica Wright, junior outfielder Kyla Walker roped a single to center field and two batters later, McGlaun hit another no-doubter that hooked around the foul pole in right field for her 14th home run of the season, giving Baylor a 6-1 lead.

Texas would not go away, tagging Rodoni for four runs and chasing the Baylor ace in the top of the sixth.

The first five Longhorn hitters reached base, beginning with a triple, a walk, an infield single and then back-to-back doubles, cutting the deficit to 6-5.

Junior Regan Green, who pitched the final two innings to collect the save, managed to get out of the inning with no further damage.

Baylor added an insurance run in the seventh when Scroggins singled and stole second. Texas sophomore Taylor Ellsworth’s throw to second was wide right and went all the way to wall in center, allowing Scroggins to score easily.

Green then got Texas to go in order in the seventh as Baylor held on for a 7-5 win.

Despite not surviving the sixth, Rodoni picked up the win (21-9), tossing five innings while giving up five runs on five hits with one walk and just two strikeouts.

Bolinger went 4 1/3, allowing four runs on six hits with one walk and one strikeout. Wright and senior Paige Von Sprecken pitched the final 1 2/3, allowing a combined three runs on five hits.

Baylor (34-14, 11-6) will go for the sweep of Texas at 2 p.m. Sunday at Getterman Stadium.