North Texas Sweeps On Day Two At Mean Green Spring Fling
Mean Green Defeat Nicholls State, UT Martin In Saturday Doubleheader
Box Score: North Texas 5, UT Martin 3
DENTON -- The North Texas softball team ran its record to 3-0 at the Mean Green Spring Fling, sweeping Saturday's doubleheader against Nicholls State and UT Martin. The Mean Green (11-6) began the day with a 2-1 win over Nicholls State and concluded the day with a 5-3 win over UT Martin.
"This team really came out and competed today," head coach Tracey Kee said. "We were in two close games and that's something that we really hadn't been in lately, so I liked how they responded under pressure against two very good hitting teams. Our pitchers did a great job of keeping us in games and eating up some innings. Offensively, it was nice to see noise one through nine."
At the plate, junior shortstop Kelli Schkade extended her program-best hitting streak to 17 games with a hit in both games Saturday. Elsewhere in the lineup, four different players tallied multi-hit games, including freshman Rhylie Makawe, who had a multi-hit game in both contests, going a combined 4-for-5 with two doubles, one run scored and one RBI.
North Texas 2, Nicholls State 1
In a classic pitcher's duel, junior Stacey Underwood out-dueled senior Hannah Haydel from Nicholls State for the 2-1 win in the first game of the day at the Mean Green Spring Fling. Both pitchers worked a complete game, and a two-out RBI single for senior Karly Williams proved to be the difference in the game.
"When you're in tight games like that, it's all about timely hitting," Kee said. "If you can get that timely hit with a runner in scoring position, that's always a positive. That's something that we were lacking earlier in the season, so it was good to see that today."
Underwood (4-3) threw a complete game, her second of the season, and gave up a single run on four hits with a walk and three strikeouts. She allowed just five base runners and she faced only one batter with a runner in scoring position during the contest. Haydel took the loss, as she allowed two runs -- one earned -- on five hits with a walk and three strikeouts.
North Texas grabbed an early 1-0 lead, pushing across a run in the first inning. Junior shortstop Kelli Schkade led off the game with a single back up the middle. She later scored on a costly fielding error by Nicholls State with two outs in the inning.
Nicholls State tied the game at 1-1 in the fourth inning, stringing together back-to-back two-out hits with a single, followed by an RBI double down the right-field line.
The Mean Green threatened in the fifth, getting a runner over to third with one, but they were unable to push another run across. They broke through in the sixth, as Williams delivered the big hit with a two-out RBI single back up the middle.
North Texas 5, UT Martin 3
North Texas put together the big inning in the bottom of the second and held on for a 5-3 win over UT Martin in the second game of the day at the Mean Green Spring Fling.
"This group is fun at the plate," Kee said. "They will bust out anytime. We strung together four or five hits in a row there. It was station to station, but it got their energy going in the game. When we're playing loose and relaxed, we can be a very dangerous team."
UT Martin struck first, taking advantage of a wild pitch and manufacturing a run in the first inning. North Texas answered back with three runs on four hits in the second inning, which saw five straight batters reach base in the inning.
And then after freshman designated player Casady Webb singled and freshman outfielder Bailey Thompson reached on a fielder's choice, junior shortstop Kelli Schkade gave North Texas its first lead of the game with a 2-RBI single through the left side.
North Texas added another run in the third on an RBI single by Williams to make it a 4-1 game. UT Martin got two runs back on a two-run home run in the fourth inning. The Mean Green had another answer, pushing across a run in the fourth on a double steal to extend the lead to 5-3.
Junior Jessica Elder (6-2) earned the win in relief, working the final 3.1 innings of the game. She did allow a run and limited UT Martin to just four hits. The Skyhawks threatened in the seven, putting runners at the corners with two outs, but Elder ended the threat with a game-ending strikeout.
- With the 2-1 win over Nicholls State, North Texas improves to 4-3 in one-run games this season
- With the weekend sweep of UT Martin, North Texas improves to 2-1 all-time against the Skyhawks
- Having already broken the school record, Kelli Schkade extended her season-opening hit streak to 17 games with a hit each against Nicholls State and UT Martin
- During her 17-game hitting streak, Kelli Schkade is hitting a team-best .419 and has eight multi-hit games
- Kelli Schkade now has six multi-RBI games, to go along with eight multi-hit games. She has 21 RBI this season, eclipsing her total of 16 from last season
- In addition to Rhylie Makawe, who had a multi-hit game in both games Saturday, Harley Perella, Karly Williams and Bryana Wade recorded multi-hit games, all against UT Martin
North Texas concludes play at the Mean Green Spring Fling with a doubleheader against Nicholls State and Houston Baptist. The Mean Green will face Nicholls State at 11 a.m. and Houston Baptist at 1 p.m.