Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

Kavan becomes first freshman pitcher in Texas softball history to throw shutout game in Women’s College World Series as Texas beats Stanford

Kennedy Weatherby

On the No. 1/1 Texas softball team, two freshmen dominated in a 4-0 shutout against No. 8/8 Stanford. 

Freshman outfielder Kayden Henry and freshman pitcher Teagan Kavan have grown together on the team as a part of the extremely talented freshman class.

“We all rely on each other,” Kavan said. “(Henry’s) my best friend. She’s my roommate. I couldn’t be happier for her.”

With the win, Kavan became the first freshman pitcher in program history to throw a complete shutout game in the Women’s College World Series. Facing 27 batters throughout seven innings, Kavan threw eight strikeouts.

“I just wanted to keep (Stanford) off the board (and) let my offense work,” Kavan said. “I just told myself to compete in every single pitch.”

While Kavan held down the Cardinal offense, Henry got the ball rolling for the Longhorns in the bottom of the third inning.

After a successful bunt, Henry beat out the throw to first. Then, after Stanford’s catcher made a mistake and let the ball slip through her glove, Henry sprinted to second.

Senior infielder Alyssa Washington, the first team captain in the Longhorns’ program’s history, took one for the team with a sacrifice bunt that got Henry to third.

Henry didn’t move from third base when redshirt sophomore outfielder Ashton Maloney hit the ball right into and out of the glove of the third baseman. With no one near second base, Maloney easily stole second to put runners at both scoring positions.

Then senior outfielder Bella Dayton stepped up to the plate. With a hit to second base, Henry made it home.

“We just know as the offense, we need to do our job and it doesn’t have to be in the first inning,” Dayton said. “So just staying confident and communicating throughout the lineup and passing the bat and relaying the message on what we’re seeing, what we’re looking for and what it looks like.”

But the second baseman made a leaping catch to stop the ball from going into the outfield and threw Maloney out, stopping a huge inning from breaking out.

Junior utility Mia Scott brought Dayton home, but the umpire called her out. Head coach Mike White quickly challenged the call.

Dayton’s mom in the stands was calling it before the umpire came out to make it official, Dayton was safe. Dayton’s hand touched the back side of the plate before being tagged, bringing the score up to 2-0.

“You’re not always going to hit home runs,” White said. “You got to be able to adapt against good pitching and be able to find ways to score runs.”

In the sixth inning, the Longhorns stopped chasing the ball and Stanford’s sophomore pitcher NiJaree Canady, the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year, threw three walks.

Henry stepped up to the plate with the bases loaded and two outs on the board.

On the first pitch, Henry swung hard and got a base hit to the right side. The ball slipped out of the Cardinal outfielder’s glove, allowing for both Scott and freshman infielder Katie Stewart to double the score.

“Tonight was just a really fun game to start off the World Series,” Dayton said.

The Longhorns continue their World Series journey at 6 p.m. on June 1 against Florida.

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