Texas softball battle wind, No. 15 Louisiana in split doubleheader

Jaclyn Helton

Texas and Louisiana battled it out against each other — and the wind — Thursday.

The No. 10 Longhorns faced off against the No. 15 Ragin’ Cajuns in a doubleheader at Red and Charline McCombs Field. The sunny Thursday doubleheader ended in a split, with Texas taking the first game 4-0 and Louisiana taking the second one 10-9.

Out of the gate in the first game, the Longhorn defense was in control, led by sophomore Shea O’Leary, who pitched a shutout complete game. 

“I knew I was going to have to go out there and pitch for my team and know that they have my back,” O’Leary said. 

Within the first three innings, O’Leary kept the Ragin’ Cajuns off the board with three strikeouts and ended the game altogether with five strikeouts total. The sophomore pitcher was able to remain efficient while fluctuating her pitching speed. 

She was also backed by her defense with an impressive diving catch by junior infielder Janae Jefferson and great ball movement by sophomore infielder Mckenzie Parker. 

“It felt amazing to have them behind my back,” O’Leary said. “I don’t know what I would do without them.” 

On the offensive side, the Longhorns battled against the Ragin’ Cajun’s defense, unable to be as consecutively explosive off the bat as they have been thus far in the season.

In the bottom of the third inning, junior utility player Mary Iakopo was able to swing her bat up the zone and blast it up the middle, hitting a two-out single and placing Texas on the board. In the bottom of the sixth, junior utility player Lauren Burke nailed one over the wall to record the first home run of the game. 

Following close behind, Parker hit the fourth straight hit for the Longhorns in the inning to center field, allowing freshman infielder Camille Corona to score the final run for the Longhorns, making the game 4-0.

In game two, the Louisiana offense started off hot with a two-run, two-out shot to start the game. From then on, Texas found itself fighting to catch up. 

Defensively, the Longhorns rotated their pitchers throughout the game and struggled to find their ace on the mound, starting with graduate student Molly Jacobsen who pitched the first three innings with three strikeouts and two errors. Then, junior Ariana Adams pitched the bottom half of the third inning through the fourth with one strikeout and three errors. Finally, freshman Ryleigh White came in to finish the game with four strikeouts and one error. 

The Texas offense fought hard to find their rhythm against the Ragin’ Cajuns defense, trailing behind 9-4 in the beginning bottom of the fifth. Iakopo managed to help her team with a two-shot run off the back and her ninth home run of the year.

Though it was unable to pull out the win, the Texas offense was able to close the gap and lost 10-9. 

The Longhorns prepare to take on New Mexico tomorrow at 6 p.m. at Red and Charline McCombs Field.