No. 5/5 Texas softball suffers three game win drought to No. 20/21 Baylor

After a tough 1-9 loss in only five innings on Friday night, Texas continued to face defeat in the last two games of the series.

“Right now, it’s just a bit of a struggle for us,” Texas head coach Mike White said. “Things just aren’t quite working out, but we have to persevere through it. Things are happening for a reason. We just have to come out and play better, that’s the bottom line.”

Baylor came into Saturday’s matchup hot, starting with two runs in the first inning and one in the third putting the score 3-0 by the end of the third inning. 

Texas offensive efforts weren’t effective until the top of the fourth when freshman shortstop and second baseman Leighann Goode scored after a double to center field by sophomore utility player Vanessa Quiroga.

Baylor then retaliated and built a larger lead in the bottom of the sixth by scoring two more runs 5-1.

In a final attempt to come back, Texas was unsuccessful in their attempt, only obtaining one run, when freshman shortstop and second baseman Viviana Martinez hit a single to center field allowing senior outfielder Lou Gilbert to score the second run for Texas, closing the first game of the series 5-2.

With Martinez’s final hit in the seventh inning, she has now driven in 47 runs in her first season as Longhorn which ties her for the fourth most RBIs in the Big-12 Conference and has the most by any Big 12 freshman athlete.

After dropping the first two games versus Baylor over the weekend, Texas continued to struggle, even when holding a lead in game three of the series. The Longhorns advanced their series win drought on Sunday, nearly losing to the Bears 2-1 in Waco, Texas.

Sophomore right-handed pitcher Mac Morgan was impressive at the mound to begin Sunday’s game. With 4.2 innings pitched and only three hits allowed by the Bears, zero runs were scored from Baylor off of Morgan. She used Sunday’s game to redeem herself after allowing five runs in the first game of the Baylor series which resulted in her shortest start time in a Longhorn uniform.

The pitching battle on Sunday was halted in the sixth inning when sophomore infielder Mia Scott doubled down the left field line on a 3-1 pitch count that brought in junior outfielder Alyssa Popelka to home plate. 

The Longhorns held a consistent 1-0 lead over the Bears until the bottom of the seventh inning that left the Texas athletes and fans shocked and heartbroken.

With two outs and two base runners on second and third for the Bears, third year catcher Zadie LaValley hit a walk-off single off of Texas’ freshman right-handed pitcher Citlaly Gutierrez that brought in both baserunners. The Bears defeated the Longhorns 2-1.

Due to Texas’ losses against Baylor and Oklahoma State University’s failed attempt to defeat Oklahoma in any games of the series, the Longhorns failed to clench the No. 2 seed for the Big 12 Conference tournament next weekend.

Phillips Big 12 Softball Championship tournament will be held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 11-13. The game times are still being determined.