North Texas Softball Heads West For Texas Tech Invitational
Tournament Marks Final Games Before C-USA Play Begins
LUBBOCK, Texas – After splitting a doubleheader with Saint Francis on Wednesday, the North Texas softball team heads west for the Texas Tech Invitational beginning on Friday, its final tune-up before conference begins.
The Mean Green (8-8) will square off against Texas Tech (8-7) and Wichita State (9-3) over the weekend.
For North Texas, it will be about finding consistency in all facets of its game before Conference USA plays begins next weekend against UTEP.
The Mean Green need to find a way to get out of innings, as two-out runs have hindered the team throughout the season, and did so again on Wednesday when Saint Francis scored four runs with two outs in fifth inning of game number two.
Several positives have come over the last few games as well though. Freshman Camille Grahmann has come on as of late for the squad, and is nursing a four-game hitting streak. She is 6-for-10 in that span, including two multi-hit games.
Senior Stacey Underwood continues to excel in the circle for the Mean Green, having tossed her fifth complete game of the season on Wednesday in North Texas 2-0 victory over Saint Francis. It was her second shutout of the season, the first being UMass Lowell on Feb. 12.
Underwood ranks in the top-10 in several C-USA categories. She is tied for fifth in wins (five) and innings pitched (50), while ranking sixth in strikeouts (36) and opponents batting average (.212).
The storyline to watch this weekend is senior Kelli Schkade’s chase for Brooke Foster’s stolen base record. Schkade enters with 38 in her Mean Green career, while Foster finished with 41.
WSU heads to Lubbock sitting just outside the top-25 ranks. The squad fell to No. 9 Oklahoma on Wednesday, ending its five game winning streak, but has put together a strong start to the season.
Kelli Spring is far and away the offensive leader for the Shockers, owning a .462 batting average across the teams first 12 games. Laurie Derrico and Macklin Hitz have provided the power with four home runs each.
Katie Malone is the ace of the staff, having appeared in all 12 games, eight of those being starts. She sports an 8-3 record with a 1.41 earned-run average, both team bests.
As for the Red Raiders, they are a tick above .500 at 8-7, and are coming off a 2-3 showing at the East Bama Bash in Tuscaloosa.
Devon Thomey sits atop as the offensive leader for TTU. She is hitting an even .400 with two-extra base hits. The Red Raiders like to run when on base, having swiped 24 bases in 28 attempts.
In the circle, a trio of pitchers split the duties, with each having made at least four starts. Kassidy Scott leads the team in era at 2.38.
All time, North Texas is 4-11 against the Shockers and 4-7 against TTU.
The Mean Green open the tournament on Friday at 1:30 p.m. against WSU, followed by a doubleheader Saturday (1 and 6 p.m.) before closing the weekend on Sunday with a 1 p.m. showdown against TTU.