A pair of newcomers lead Texas into Thursday night showdown with Blinn

Bradley Maddox

Pitcher Paige von Sprecken and outfielder Reagan Hathaway may be the missing pieces the Longhorns need to take them back to the College World Series. 

The two young stars arrived through different routes, but they ended up in the same place: as newcomers to Texas softball. Hathaway joined the team as a freshman while von Sprecken transferred from the University of San Diego.

“USD wasn’t the right fit for me,” von Sprecken said. “My mom suggested I look at Texas. So when I came to visit, I fell in love with the campus. I started talking to coach Clark and everything just fell into place.”

Hathaway, a Kansas native, said she enjoys playing college ball with such a talented group.

“I’m surrounded by these great players, so it’s fun to play with people at the same level,” Hathaway said. “It’s humbling, but I don’t feel like any less of a player than when I was in high school.”

As a junior at Olathe Northwest High School, Hathaway told her school paper, The Raven Daily, she knew that her hitting prowess could lead to lofty heights.

“I think this will be a good experience,” she told the Daily. “I might get to play in the College World Series.”

But before Hathaway and the Longhorns contend for playoffs, they must use games like Thursday’s fall game against Blinn College as preparation. The two teams play at 6:30 p.m. at the Red and Charline McCombs Field. 

Clark usually focuses on the task at hand, but, when examining her roster, she said she sees great new potential for regular-season play. 

“What I like best is how well they fit into the clubhouse,” Clark said. “Paige and Reagan just fell right into place.”