North Texas Daily

Mean Green softball swept in doubleheader to begin 2017 season

Mean Green softball swept in doubleheader to begin 2017 season

February 11
19:10 2017

North Texas softball dropped both games of Saturday’s double header to begin the 2017 season against Arkansas University and the University of Massachusetts-Lowell.

With nothing working for them, the Mean Green gave up seven homeruns, committed five errors, and left 11 runners on base over the span of two games. They didn’t score their first run of the season until a late game rally in the bottom of the seventh inning of the second game.

“I’ve never had a day where nothing worked,” Head Coach Tracey Kee said. “We couldn’t create a break. We didn’t even give ourselves the opportunity.”

Arkansas 11, North Texas 0.

Arkansas took an early lead to start the first game of North Texas’ double header Saturday afternoon after right fielder Nicole Schroeder hit a two-run homer off Mean Green senior pitcher Stacey Underwood.

While Underwood had a quick 1-2-3 third inning, the fourth started off much like the first. The first batter she faced grounded out but the second batter hit a single, and moments later, Underwood surrendered her second two-run jack of the day.

“I felt pretty good about [my pitching] but they’re a good hitting team, obviously,” Underwood said.

After an error by center fielder Danielle Gregory, Underwood gave up a triple, allowing Arkansas to score their fifth run of the game. Underwood was then pulled for right-hander Lauren Crain, who got the final two outs.

Underwood pitched 3.1 innings, gave up five runs on six hits with three walks and a strikeout.

And the game only got worse for the Mean Green in the fifth inning.

Arkansas scored six runs after Craine gave up a three-run homer that opened the floodgates. With an 11-0 lead, Arkansas won the game after five innings due to the run rule.

“I was disappointed today and I think our kids are too,” Kee said. “We have the ability to play a lot better than we displayed.”

UMass-Lowell 8, North Texas 6.

North Texas was shut out for 11 innings before getting its first run of the season in the bottom of the seventh inning against UMass-Lowell.

The Mean Green started what would’ve been the final inning of day with a double, followed by a homerun by first baseman Lacey Gregory. After freshman catcher Nicole Ochontnicki singled to left, she made it to third after two ground outs, and then scored on a double by Schkade.

Freshman right fielder Hanna Rebar hit the game-tying home run to send the game into extra innings.

“Every home run feels great but it feels better when everyone is feeling great,” Rebar said.

Due to international tiebreaking rules, both teams started out the eighth inning with a runner on second base.

In the top of the eighth, UMass first baseman Vanessa Cooper was hit by a pitch to start the inning with runners on first and second. After a fielder’s choice that put runners on the corner with one out, UMass scored once again to take the lead after an error by Schkade. Two more runs scored after a single up the middle giving UMass an 8-5 lead.

Lindsay Gregory began the Mean Green half of the eighth with a double, scoring Bailey Thompson from second.

But that would be the last run North Texas scored, as the Mean Green stranded Gregory on third base to end the game.

“I think for us, a lot of people would say ‘Oh you did a great job [hitting in the 7th]’” Kee said.  “But where were those hits the first 12 innings we played?”

The Mean Green will close out the North Texas Invitational tomorrow with another double header against Arkansas and UMass Lowell.

Featured Image: Sophomore infielder Harley Perella (3) hits the ball back up the middle against the University of Massachusetts – Lowell on February 11. Clay Massey

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Morgan Price

Morgan Price

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