As I set down on my couch all ready to watch the Texas vs. Washington softball game on the Longhorn Network the dreaded screen of rain came on and the game was delayed. As I kept checking back for updates on when it would start nothing. The usual update scroll on the bottom of the screen never happened so I decided to head to the Texas website and to my shock the game had begun but wasn’t gonna be broadcast live but tape delayed starting at 11:30 pm my time(EST). I noticed the link to the game on their site though and was able to hear the last few innings live via the radio broadcast of the game.
I did get to watch the tape delayed version of the game later on tv but already knowing the final score put a smell of being undramatic in the air. I did take several things away from watching the game though. Texas is better then their 4-5 record would suggest as they hung tight with the #1/#3 team in the country. And surprise Texas senior right-hander lead pitcher Paige von Sprecken went toe-to-toe with Washington’s own ace Taran Alvelo.
The difference in the game is the same problem Texas has had so far this year getting runners home. It looked like Texas was ready to have a big inning in their portion of the third when Randel Leahy got a single with just one out followed by freshman Janae Jefferson who drew a nine-pitch walk. But Washington’s Alvelo proved why she is considered one of the best pitchers in the country as she struck out the next two Texas batters to escape the inning.
Washington broke the goose eggs on the scoreboard in the 5th inning. Lead-off batter Trysten Melhart beat out an infield single to get on base, followed by a sacrifice bunt moving her to second base. Next up Taylor Van Zee got a single through the right side that resulted in an obstruction call being made against Texas’ catcher Taylor Ellsworth on a home plate play giving Washington a 1-0 lead.
Washington added another run in the top of the 6th to take a 2-0 lead before Texas got on the scoreboard when Ellsworth got a lead-off single followed by von Sprecken who banged a double into left field. Alvelo got the next Texas batter out but MK Tedder drove a RBI single through the right side of the infield. Alvelo got back on track though striking out the next two Texas batters to end the inning. That was all Texas could do as in their portion of the 7th inning they went down 1,2,3. Texas junior Brooke Bolinger struck out one during her seventh inning of relief work with the game ending 2-1 in favor of Washington.
Here’s Texas Head Coach Connie Clark’s toughts on the game:
“Well, I think it is part of the measuring stick early in the season. We’ve got a tough schedule. We’ve talked about that, and that it doesn’t get any easier. I think the key for us is just to continue to get better. I think if we can keep getting better, some good things are going to happen for us. We can’t really get consumed with records, we just need to get consumed with building our confidence up and knowing there is another opportunity two days from now.”