Hooks leads from behind plate

Sara Beth Purdy


Amy Hooks is a solid player on a very talented Texas team. Hooks produced two hits and three RBIs and scored one run in the Longhorn’s 12-0 and 10-2 victories against Kansas. She just does what is needed offensively. 
During the fourth inning, her single to lead off the inning turned into a run, and a sacrifice bunt in the fifth placed junior Lexy Bennett in scoring position for the game-winning run. Her .342 batting average may not be the highest on a team of explosive hitters, but it’s her work behind the plate that sets her apart.
“I don’t think we could ever be in a better position than we are in to have somebody like Amy Hooks as a senior back there,” said head coach Connie Clark. “She’s tremendous. She’s certainly an important piece to our puzzle this year.”
Sophomore starting pitcher Blaire Luna began the Sunday afternoon game rusty. In the first inning, after giving up two runs, walking one and hitting a batter, it was Hooks that helped to turn her around.
“I just tell her to relax and stay focused,” Hooks said about her conversations with Luna. “One thing we say is to stay pitch to pitch. If I call a time, I’m just relaxing her and telling her to not get frustrated with the outcome and to keep staying with her game plan.”
Hooks also has good communication with her infield. During the top of the second inning, an attempt by the Jayhawks to steal second base was thwarted by a quick throw from Hooks to senior Raygan Feight at first base. Although the runner barely made it safely back to first and the out was not achieved, Hooks’s quick thinking and accurate communication with her infield kept the runner on first and prevented Kansas from scoring.
“I think this year is one of best years that we have had with communication, and it’s every player, even the outfield,” Hooks said. “Everybody is talking during every play, before every play and after every play. It’s great to hear everybody involved.”
Hooks’s performance this weekend was not an anomaly. Luna commented that Hook’s consistency and knowledge of the game was an important factor in the Longhorns’ win.
“We were on the same page throughout the entire game. She knew what I wanted to throw and knew when to give me time to let go.” Luna said.