North Texas Sweeps Saturday's Doubleheader
Mean Green Push Winning Streak To Three Games
WILMINGTON, North Carolina – The North Texas softball team moved its winning streak to three games on Saturday, sweeping day two’s action at the Hampton Inn and Suites University Area Seahawk Softball Classic hosted by UNCW.
The Mean Green opened the day with a 6-2 victory over Maryland-Baltimore County and ended the night by defeating Appalachian State 7-3.
“Today was a day where we had everything working,” head coach Tracey Kee said. “We had solid pitching performances, our bats came alive and we were able to get our running game going to help push runs across.”
North Texas pounded out 25 hits and scored 13 runs across the two contests, while Harley Perella paced the Mean Green attack, going 5-for-8 in the two games with three RBI.
North Texas 6, Maryland-Baltimore County 2
The Mean Green’s offense erupted for six runs on a season-high 13 hits in their 6-2 victory over the UMBC Retrievers to open day two.
“Our kids knew we underperformed yesterday,” Kee added. “They turned it around today and had quality at bats. When you have quality at bats, they tend to lead to hits and we kept stringing them together and made them pay for a few mistakes.”
Senior Jessica Elder (1-3) picked up her first win of the season, going 5.1 innings allowing one run on three hits before having to leave the game in the sixth inning with a hand injury. Sophomore Lauren Craine finished in the circle, tossing 1.2 innings, giving up one run in relief.
The Retrievers struck first in the opening frame, as Morgan Peyou reached on an infield single, stole second and came around the score on Jaclyn Buckley’s sac fly to right.
Elder issued a one-out walk to UMBC’s Kaelin Jackson in the bottom of the first, but went on to retired 14 of the next 16 batters she faced before a walk in the sixth inning.
After the Retriever scored in the first, it was all North Texas as the team responded in the home half of inning with a run of its own.
Senior Kelli Schkade opened the frame with an infield single, stole second and later scored on Perella’s two-strike, two-out double down the right-field line.
The Mean Green made it a 3-1 game in the second, capitalizing on a UMBC (4-9) error, taking a 3-2 lead, and never trailed in the game again.
Freshman Lindsay Gregory reached on a fielding error by UMBC’s shortstop, and freshman Hanna Rebar moved her into scoring position with a single of her own. Schkade delivered a two RBI triple just inside the third base line on a 3-2 count, driving them both home, moving the score to 3-1.
In the third, North Texas strung together four hits, highlighted by RBI singles by Lindsay Gregory and Hannah Gerecke, building its lead to four at 5-1.
North Texas pushed one more run across in the fifth, when Rhylie Makawe singled and later scored on a throw down to second base by UMBC’s catcher.
UMBC plated a run in the seventh to end the scoring, 6-2 in favor of the Mean Green.
North Texas 7, App State 3
After edging out the Mountaineers 1-0 on Friday, North Texas (7-6) scored a season-high seven runs on 12 hits in the 7-3 victory at Boseman Field, downing the Mountaineers (6-7) for the second time in as many days.
Stacey Underwood (4-3), rebounded after Friday’s loss to UNCW, throwing a complete game in the contest, limiting App State to four hits.
“With Stacey, it’s all about composure,” Kee explained. “She is a completely different pitcher this year between the pitches she is throwing and how she approaches each game. I couldn’t be more proud of her performances thus far.”
The Mountaineers jumped on the board with a run in the first inning against Underwood, but would be shut down over the next four frames and was limited to four hits in the contest.
North Texas didn’t get on the board until the third inning, but manufactured three runs to take the lead.
With bases loaded in the third, Schkade scored sophomore Hannah Gerecke with a single to left field. One batter later, freshman Lacy Gregory laced a double to right-center field, scoring freshman Camille Grahmann and Schkade to give the Mean Green a 3-1 lead.
Once the lead was in her hands, Underwood didn’t let it go and kept App State off the board until the sixth.
In the fifth, Perella pushed two more runs across on a two-run dinger just inside the left field foul pole, scoring Bailey Thompson who singled to begin the frame.
“Harley is a gritty player,” Kee said of her third baseman. “I know she was disappointed early in the year when she was hitting in the bottom of the lineup. She had some huge hits today and some great at bats. When she’s dialed in, she’s a tough out.”
The Mountaineers got within two in the sixth inning, as Jenny Dodd hit a two-run home run to right-center, bringing the score to 5-3.
North Texas scored two runs in the top of the seventh to bring the lead back to four, finishing the scoring in its favor.
- The 13 hits against UMBC was a season high.
- Rhylie Makawe recorded her first multi-hit game of the season in a 3-for-4 performance against UMBA.
- Today marks the first time North Texas has won both games of a doubleheader this season.
- Harley Perella leads the team with five doubles and is tied for the team lead with two home runs.
- Kelli Schkade stole three bases against UMBC, bringing her team-leading total to eight.
- Hannah Gerecke stole three bases against UMBC as well. She entered the game with one on the season.
- The Mean Green stole a season high seven bases against UMBC.
Up Next For The Mean Green
North Texas will play UNCW on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. (E.T.) for the tournament championship.