North Texas Daily

Softball swept by Louisiana Tech in Conference USA finale

Softball swept by Louisiana Tech in Conference USA finale

April 30
19:52 2017

In a rare Sunday doubleheader, North Texas softball fell in both games to Louisiana Tech University. The Lady Techsters completed the three-game series sweep and moved a step closer to locking up the Conference USA Western Division.

The Mean Green (24-27, 11-13) have not yet clinched a spot in the C-USA tournament as C-USA play wraps, but the risk of missing the tournament is slim. Regardless, head coach Tracey Kee was not pleased with her squad’s performance over the weekend.

“LA Tech wanted it more than our kids,” Kee said. “They capitalized on every mistake we made. We could not get anything going.”

Louisiana Tech 6, North Texas 4

 A five-spot in the third inning gave the Lady Techsters (33-18, 16-5) the win in game one. Louisiana Tech made the most of its nine hits off of two North Texas pitchers.

Senior Jessica Elder got the start and went just 2.2 innings allowing four runs on four hits. Elder went two scoreless innings before the Lady Techsters go to her for four runs in the third. Sophmore Lauren Craine came in on relief, allowing just two runs on five hits in 3.1 innings of work.

Craine allowed one in the third before junior short stop Katie Smith singled up the middle in the fifth to score a run and give Louisiana Tech a 6-1 lead. Craine is feeling better about her work.

“I knew they were going to be tough,” Craine said. “I feel a little better. We needed to eliminate their streaky hitting but we couldn’t keep runs off the board.”

North Texas’ only run up to that point came in the second inning when freshman Camille Grahmann lined a triple to left center scoring a run. The Mean Green showed some life in the sixth inning with three runs, but the Mean Green fell short of the comeback.

Louisiana Tech 5, North Texas 1

Game two was more of the same for North Texas as the Lady Techsters again notched nine hits. Senior righty Stacey Underwood got the start but was yanked after 4.0 innings of work. She allowed three runs on five hits.

The senior has struggled since a hot start to the season.

“I think she needs to get out of her own head,” Kee said.

The Lady Techsters started the ballgame off with a run in the first before adding a run in the fourth for a 2-0 lead. The fifth inning saw two more runs for Louisiana Tech making it a 4-0 game. Senior infielder Kelli Schkade, the team’s leader in batting average, went 1-for-3 in the ballgame.

“We didn’t have anything going,” Schkade said. “Nothing was working. We couldn’t string anything together.”

North Texas’ only run came in the sixth after freshman Lindsay Gregory knocked home a run with a sac-fly but the Lady Techsters had a sac-fly of their own in the sixth to push the game to 5-1 which would be the final.

Next up: The Mean Green face off with No. 1 Florida University on Friday. First pitch is at 5 p.m.

“Nobody expects anything of us,” Kee said. “We have a chance to do something special if we compete. We have an opportunity to do something not a lot of teams would want to do.”

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Clay Massey

Clay Massey

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