Softball drops midweek matchup with Incarnate Word 6-4

Baylor softball falls to Incarnate Word for their fourth straight loss on March 29 at Getterman Stadium. Photo courtesy of Baylor Athletics

By Joe Pratt | Broadcast Reporter

Baylor softball fell 6-4 to Incarnate Word on Tuesday night at Getterman Stadium. It was the Bears’ fourth straight loss after going 0-3 against the University of Oklahoma last weekend. Having started his top pitchers during the weekend, head coach Glenn Moore hoped his team could still secure a victory despite a less powerful lineup.

“You’ve got to be able to risk losing a midweek to get your pitchers ready and your bullpen ready for the Big 12 weekends this time of the year and knock off some of the rust off those pitchers [who] haven’t thrown a whole lot,” Moore said.

Freshman pitcher Kaci West started the game and kept the Cardinals’ offense at bay until the second inning. Incarnate Word rallied and capitalized on Baylor’s fielding mistakes, scoring four runs off of two hits in the third inning, but only two of those runs were earned.

“The value of playing well behind [the pitchers],” Moore said. “It … increases the chances of something like this happening.”

West was also involved offensively, opening the scoring with an RBI single. Sophomore outfielder McKenzie Wilson scored after leading the game with a walk.

Junior pitcher Rachel Hertenberger replaced West in the fourth, retiring the first three batters she faced. Hertenberger allowed another UIW surge in the fifth as the Cardinals knocked three more base hits, driving home two additional runs.

The wind was a factor all game long. From first pitch to the final out, gusts above 25 mph kept fly balls in the diamond. The weather also caused some missed fly balls and errant throws.

“I think [Incarnate Word] played better according to the weather, they kept the ball up in the strike zone and we hit the ball in the air more,” Moore said. “They also made some good plays with the playing [in the wind] as well.”

Senior third baseman Sydney Collazos got the Bears back on the board after three scoreless innings. She sent a rocket up the middle, and sophomore outfielder Emma Watson rounded home from second. Baylor wasn’t able to manage any more runs in the inning, and the game was 6-2 headed into the final two frames.

Moore’s squad showed they had some life left when sophomore catcher Zadie LaValley singled with one out in the bottom of the sixth. Senior first baseman Rhein Trochim followed up with a single of her own and Wilson stepped up to the plate with runners on first and second, with two outs. The Bear’s top offensive weapon earned her 21st and 22nd RBIs on the year, drilling a ball all the way to the left-center field fence. Wilson, however, was called out after trying to stretch a double into a triple, and the inning was capped off, but not before Baylor put up two more tallies.

The Bears couldn’t manage any more runs in the seventh, as they came up short 6-4. Tuesday night was Baylor’s fourth loss in a row, and Moore’s team looks to right the ship this weekend against Oklahoma State University. It will be a three-game series with the Cowboys starting 6:30 p.m. Friday, followed by matchups at 7 p.m. on Saturday and at 1 p.m. on Sunday at home.

“I talked to them about the importance of this this weekend, [and] I don’t have to tell this team when you play in a Big 12 [game],” Moore said. “If you have to get your team up for those games, then you have the wrong athletes. I don’t think I have to say a whole lot to get them … but I will say a whole lot just because we’ll prepare them anyway just to make sure.”