Head coach Mike White celebrates 100 wins with Texas Softball

Nicholas Pannes

As of Saturday afternoon, Texas softball has played 123 games under the leadership of head coach Mike White. After beating Iowa State 11-5, Texas softball has officially won 100 of the games coached by White.

After Saturday’s contest against the Cyclones, White acknowledged his milestone, took time to appreciate his tenure at Texas so far and hinted at more success to come.

“100 wins,” White said. “It sure is exciting to (coach) at Texas. It’s a great place to be, and I’m excited to get 100 more hopefully, right?”

The game, which took place in Ames, Iowa, was the second in a series against the Cyclones, and marked the Longhorns’ fifth-straight victory in conference play this season.

Indicative of the success the program has enjoyed under the direction of White and his staff, the Longhorns came out and executed their game plan to a T. Texas displayed solid pitching, complemented by an error-free defense and an overpowering offense paving the way to a decisive victory.

“I thought the team did a great job offensively again.” White said postgame. “We had zero errors (as well). I thought (graduate transfer pitcher) Molly (Jacobsen) did well starting off. (When) it seemed … like things were happening to us a little bit, (freshman pitcher) Ryleigh White came in and did a phenomenal job for us in those last two innings.”

After a recent explosive run by the underclassmen on the team, the veteran players took charge in Saturday’s contest.

Junior All-American Janae Jefferson led the Texas offense in their 11-point showing, flexing a rare streak of power hitting, as she knocked away two home runs for three RBIs. Senior outfielder Shannon Rhodes had another impressive game in what could become a record-breaking season for her, sending home three RBIs of her own. Compounding on the offensive outburst, junior utility player Lauren Burke went .500 at the plate for another two RBIs.

There’s always a young prospect looking to make their mark in the Texas dugout. Sophomore infielder McKenzie Parker smashed a deep home run into the scoreboard in the top of the fourth inning to extend the Longhorns’ lead down the stretch.

While the Longhorns did end up clinching a decisive win in the end, Iowa State made things interesting with a late comeback attempt. The Cyclones scored five points in three innings and had the game within three runs by the bottom of the fifth, before Texas closed the door on their offense. White said after the game this was to be expected from the scrappy Iowa State team.

“Iowa State’s definitely a gritty team,” White said. “They come in here, (and) they never lie down … and that’s kudos to them. They’ve seen four of our pitchers (so far). So we’re gonna have to have everybody on deck and ready to go and go fight one out and show some Texas fight tomorrow.”

White and the Longhorns look to complete their sweep of the Cyclones tomorrow afternoon.