North Texas Drops Both Games At Kansas Round Robin Saturday
Mean Green Conclude Play In Kansas Against Georgia Tech On Sunday
Game Two: Kansas 12, North Texas 2 (5)
LAWRENCE, Kan. -- The North Texas softball team continued play at the Kansas Round Robin, dropping both games to Georgia Tech and Kansas. North Texas (19-19) left a season-high 13 runners on base in an 8-4 loss to Georgia Tech (16-21) and fell victim to two big innings in a 12-2 run-rule loss to Kansas (22-13) in five innings.
"We struggled all day today," head coach Tracey Kee said. "The only positive I take away from today was that I thought we swung the bats with more velocity and hit the ball with more depth in the second against Kansas. We have to stick with it. Our kids know that they can't roll over."
North Texas looks to bounce back tomorrow in its final game of the Kansas Round Robin against Georgia Tech and also figure some things out in all phases of the game, before returning to conference play next weekend at Southern Miss.
"We're trying to get everything put together," Kee said. "We'll get a good pitching outing, and we'll lack the offense. We'll get some good sticks, and we'll lack the pitching. We need to relax and try to not put too much pressure on ourselves. When you're in a losing streak, if you tighten up, you're going to sit on that streak longer. We need to stay loose and continue to have fun and work hard."
Game One: Georgia Tech 8, North Texas 4
Georgia Tech put together back-to-back three-run innings in the fourth and fifth innings and that proved to be the difference in its 8-4 win over North Texas in the first game of the day at the Kansas Round Robin. Junior shortstop Kelli Schkade had three of the Mean Green's five hits, going 3-for-5 with a double, a run scored and an RBI.
Freshman Jenna Goodrich (6-8) tossed a complete game in the win for Georgia Tech, giving up four runs on five hits with seven walks, four hit by pitches and 10 strikeouts in 7.0 innings. North Texas left a season-high 13 runners on base, going just 3-for-20 with runners on base, including 3-for-12 with runners in scoring position.
Georgia Tech struck first, grabbing a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on an RBI single to center, after a double and a wild pitch to lead off the game. North Texas answered right back in the bottom of the inning, taking advantage of an error and two walks and tying the game at 1-1 on an RBI groundout by freshman outfielder Makenzi Dawson.
North Texas threatened in the bottom of third, as senior second baseman Karly Williams led off the inning with a double down the left-field line and Dawson later reached on a hit by pitch, but they could not push a run across in the frame.
Georgia Tech regained a 4-1 lead, scoring three runs in the fourth. The Yellow Jackets loaded the bases with no outs, and then after the lead runner was cut down for the first out of the inning, scored the first two runs on a throwing error and later added another run on a two-out, bases-loaded walk. They later extended their lead to 7-1, scoring three more runs on five hits in the fifth.
North Texas threatened in both the fifth and seventh innings. The Mean Green loaded the bases with two outs in the fifth, and freshman outfielder Hannah Gerecke drew a bases-loaded walk to make it a 7-2 game. In the bottom of the seventh, senior catcher Bryana Wade and Schkade delivered with back-to-back, two-out base knocks, but they were unable to extend the game.
"In the first three innings, we left runners on second and third and we just couldn't get a timely hit," Kee said. "We didn't do a good job of putting the ball in play when we had opportunities. We had chances to score early and often and we didn't, and then they pushed runs across."
Game Two: Kansas 12, North Texas 2 (5)
North Texas and Kansas played to a 1-1 tie through three and a half innings, before Kansas exploded for six runs in the fourth and five more run in the fifth on the way to a 12-2 run-rule win in five innings.
After trading zeroes in the first inning, Kansas grabbed an early 1-0 lead on back-to-back, one-out doubles in the bottom of the second. North Texas answered right back in the top of the third. Junior shortstop Kelli Schkade led off the inning with a double to the gap in left-center field and then scored on an RBI groundout by freshman outfielder Makenzi Dawson.
With the game tied at 1-1, Kansas exploded for six runs in the bottom of the fourth. After the first out was recorded, each of the next eight batters reached base, as Kansas scored six runs on four hits, three walks and a fielding error in the inning. North Texas made it a 7-2 game in the top of the fifth with a solo home run by sophomore designated player Lauren Miller, her second home run of the season.
Kansas clinched the 12-2 win with five runs in the bottom of fifth. After the first two runs scored on back-to-back hit by pitches, sophomore first baseman Daniella Chavez provided the big hit of the inning, a bases-clearing, three-RBI double to the gap in left-center field.
Junior Jessica Elder (12-7) took the loss for North Texas, giving up 12 runs -- 11 earned -- on nine hits with three walks in 4.2 innings.
"When you look at Jess, I give her a pass," Kee said. "She's been carrying us all year and has never had an inning like that. I have no doubt that this group will bounce back."
- Since winning two of three games at WKU, North Texas has lost seven of its last eight games, including three in a row
- North Texas is now 4-15 when its opponent scores first, compared to a 15-4 record when it scores first this season
- North Texas left a season-high 13 runners on base against Georgia Tech, going just 3-for-20 with runners on base, including 3-for-12 with runners in scoring position, and 3-for-10 with two outs in the contest
- North Texas set a season-high with four by pitches against Georgia Tech, one each by Harley Perella, Makenzi Dawson, Rhylie Makawe and Lauren Miller
- Kelli Schkade tallied her second three-hit game of the season, her team-leading 15th multi-hit game of the season, going 3-for-5 with a double, a run scored and an RBI
- North Texas allowed 10 or more runs for just the second time this season
- The 12 runs allowed against Kansas was tied for the most runs allowed by North Texas this season, matching the 12 runs allowed against FIU on April 3
- In the second game of the day, Kansas was a blistering 7-for-13 with runners on base, including 5-for-11 with runners in scoring position, and left just three runners on base in the contest
North Texas concludes play at the Kansas Round Robin against Georgia Tech on Sunday with a first pitch set for 9 a.m.