Longhorns kick off Texas Classic with back-to-back wins

Katie Borchetta, General Sports Reporter

No. 9 Texas softball dominated in their first day of their weekend in Austin for the Texas Classic, outscoring Loyola Chicago and Omaha 11-4 and 7-6, respectively.

Junior Alyssa Washington said that with the three home wins under her belt, she and her team are more at ease going forward in the season.

“I think knowing that we’re playing through the nervousness … and knowing that we can push through and finish a game … we’re kind of in a good spot,” Washington said.

Starting with Loyola, Texas scored seven runs in the second inning alone, and another three were run in in the third.

Sophomore Mia Scott and freshman Leighann Goode both had two runs. Goode became the first Texas softball true freshman to have a 4-for-4 performance at the plate since Mia Scott last season against UCLA in the Women’s College World Series on June 2, 2022.

Sophomore Vanessa Quiroga also had a home run that banked off the scoreboard in the bottom of the sixth inning, giving Texas their final run of the game.

Junior Estelle Czech defended the Wolves from scoring by pitching five innings while allowing only four hits and having seven strikeouts. Freshman Citlaly Gutierrez finished the game on the mound for Texas, pitching the remaining two innings with two strikeouts, two hits, and no runs.

The matchup with Omaha was a bit more intense, with Omaha acquiring two hits in the first inning. Texas retaliated in the bottom of the inning with Washington hitting a home run and running herself and Scott home. 

“When I had two strikes, it was kind of like, look out in front and expand my zone a little bit,” Washington said. “So on that one, I loaded up earlier and kind of went with what I saw.”

The score remained 3-3 until the sixth inning, where Scott singled to left field and got two RBIs, and Washington hit a double and had two RBIs, resulting in a 7-3 lead by Texas.

The top of the seventh made Texas sweat when Omaha scored three runs with Texas only having one out. However, the Longhorns were able to obtain the last two outs and finish off day one of the Texas Classic with two wins.

Sophomore Mac Morgan, who pitched 6.1 innings with 103 pitches thrown, six strikeouts and nine hits given up, was a huge help in Texas’ success. 

Head coach Mike White emphasized that there were struggles for the pitchers in today’s games, which resulted in White talking to them on the mound and trying to calm them down and play their game.

“(I’m) trying to find out where their head’s at, what kind of space they’re in, trying to bring them back to the present moment because a lot of times, they are thinking outcomes not process,” White said. 

Goode finished off the game with a .565 batting average for her three times at bat, with Scott following with .481 with four plate appearances. 

Texas will face off against both teams again tomorrow at McCombs Field at 3 and 5:30 p.m.