North Texas Daily

Game two collapse forces softball to settle for split

Game two collapse forces softball to settle for split

Sophomore Lauren Craine pitches the ball against Saint Francis. Sara Carpenter

Game two collapse forces softball to settle for split
March 01
23:13 2017

The North Texas softball team was so close, yet so far, from a sweep in its doubleheader againstSaint Francis University Wednesday evening.

The Mean Green (8-8) had to settle for a split at home after they playing well for the majority of the two games. North Texas unravelled in game two after a solid game one victory over the Red Flash (12-7).

North Texas 2, Saint Francis 0

Led by the excellent pitching of senior right hander Stacey Underwood, the Mean Green were able to hold on to their two run lead they built in the first two innings.

Underwood pitched a complete game and only allowed two hits and three walks while striking out six Red Flash batters.

“I always love when we get an early lead,” senior pitcher Stacey Underwood said. “I feel like I can just take a deep breath and not try to put up a zero all the time.”

The first of the two runs came on a lead-off home run by senior infielder Kelli Schkade. The second came off of an error in the second inning, but that was all the team needed to steal the first game behind Underwood’s stellar pitching performance.

“Anytime your leadoff batter gets up and hits a homerun, you have one run on the board and I thought the team settled in immediately.” head coach Tracy Kee said. “Great outing by Underwood to to be able to hold [the lead] against a very good Saint Francis hitting team.”

Saint Francis 11, North Texas 2

With another 2-0 lead, the Mean Green looked to be well on their way to another defensive win as they had two outs with none on against them in the top of the fifth. Then one errant pitch changed the momentum and the course of the entire game.

The Red Flash proceeded to score four runs in the top of the fifth despite having two outs against them. The following inning, Saint Francis tacked on seven more runs leading to two pitching changes that could not stop the bleeding.

“It’s reoccurring, we have one bad inning,” freshman utility player Lacy Gregory said. “If we could’ve played 14 good innings instead of 11 we’d be two and [zero] today. We just have to be consistent.”

The game turned on that inning and the momentum was palpable.

The Red Flash had their proverbial ‘ace’ on the mound for this game and the Mean Green were forced to resort to small-ball methods such as bunting and stealing to put runners in scoring positions.

While they had opportunities to score, the Mean Green fell in six innings, ending their night on a sour note.

“We [had] an opportunity to tie the game with two of our best sticks but couldn’t get that clutch hit,” Kee said. “Once that occurred, momentum swung in their direction and the wheels just fell off.”

In the two contests, the Mean Green showed promise as they grabbed but then lost a winning record over the span of five hours.

However, as the conference season approaches, Kee is looking for consistency out of her team.

“For us, as I told our kids, we played eleven out of thirteen innings today,” Kee said. “And it’s that one big inning that [cost us]. If we could take one inning out of every game we’d be a very very good team right now.”

Featured Image: Sophomore Lauren Craine pitches the ball against Saint Francis. UNT Softball is currently 7-7. Sara Carpenter

About Author

Matthew Brune

Matthew Brune

Matthew Brune is the Senior Sports Writer for the North Texas Daily, covering football and men's basketball.

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