Don’t let a few losses crush your belief that Texas is a top program

Sara Beth Purdy

Despite a few hiccups during the past two weeks that have handed the Longhorns twice as many losses as they had amassed all season, Texas still sits as one of the top college programs in the country.

This weekend the No 5. Longhorns will have a chance to avenge recent losses to Baylor and Missouri with a home series against the Oklahoma State Cowgirls. Texas is currently 35-6 on the season and 9-4 in Big 12 play.

Not only are they ranked fifth in several major national polls, but the Longhorns are also enjoying other national recognitions across the team.

Senior second baseman Lexy Bennett, who was selected third overall in the 2012 National Pro Fastpitch professional draft, holds two national rankings in major categories. Bennett is second in sacrifice flies with five on the season and ninth in RBIs per game with 1.23 RBIs per game.

The senior leads the team in batting average with .424 and RBIs on the season with 49. In game one against Missouri, Bennett broke the Texas career RBI record with her 140th RBI. Going into the weekend series against Oklahoma State, Bennett has 147 RBIs with at least a month left in the season.

It was also announced that Bennett is a top 25 finalist for National Player of the year for the Amateur Softball Association of America.

Junior standout pitcher Blaire Luna is also nationally ranked for her performances for the Longhorns. Luna is ranked third in strikeouts per seven inning game. She has 170 total strikeouts so far this season and has averaged an impressive 10.7 strikeouts per game. With 885 career strikeouts, Luna sits in third place at Texas. She has a year to improve her standing; however, former Longhorn Legend Cat Osterman has 2265 career strikeouts and is in first place.

Taylor Hoagland, who made national headlines last year as a member of the USA Softball Women’s National Team team, is 15th in runs scored per game. The junior outfielder has averaged 1.1 runs scored per game this season for a team leading total of 44 runs scored this season.

The team as a whole holds top spots in several major categories. The powerful Texas offense, which has been a major factor for most of the season, is ranked second in batting average with an average of .348 on the season and seventh in scoring with an average of 7.05 runs scored per game played.

They are also ranked seventh in team slugging percentage with .552 percentage on the season. Sophomore Karina Scott leads the team in slugging percentage with .795 percent. The Texas offense is also ranked 13th in stolen bases with an average of 1.88 stolen bases per game. Sophomore Brejae Washington has a team high 22 stolen bases on the season out of 27 attempts. The team as a whole has stolen 76 bases so far this season out of 93 attempts.