Jaguars sweep opening games
Coach Lindsey Ortiz didn't plan to keep her pitchers on the mound for the whole game during UHV's opening doubleheader Thursday against Texas Southern.
But Savannah Crittenden and Alex Holland each ended up pitching all seven innings of their respective games.
"We felt like they were chugging along, and we have a long week of games ahead," Ortiz said about pitchers Crittenden and Holland. "Having those two throw means we have four (pitchers) fresh for our next four games."
The Jaguars won their first game 8-6 over TSU.
The first game went by relatively quickly, with Crittenden allowing six runs on nine hits by TSU players and walking four batters.
The Jaguars scored four runs in the first inning compared to TSU's one, which set the tone for the rest of the game.
UHV would score twice in the fourth inning and two more times in the sixth.
Toward the end of the game, Crittenden was injured at home plate in an attempt to get a runner out. She was able to finish the game, though.
TSU went through three different pitchers in the first game and two in the second.
Freshman Shelby Smith scored once off two hits and had three RBIs in the first game.
Ashley Winegeart and Marley Moerig also scored runs and made two base hits that sent runners home.
Senior Kristina Droz guarded the plate as catcher for the first game, and Smith took over in the second.
"We call the catcher the general on the field - they're the boss; they make the decisions and plays," Ortiz said. "They're definitely a pillar in our defense, and both did their jobs tonight."
Ortiz said that UHV's losses in Alexandria, La., over the weekend left a bad taste in players' mouths.
Even though they only had three days of practice this week, they dedicated all day Tuesday to batting.
"We worked extra hard in practice, and coach Emily (Bergstrom) and I challenged them to rise to the occasion, and they did," Ortiz said.
"That made a difference and helped us improve on a lot of issues we had from last weekend," Ortiz said.
Senior pitcher Holland pitched all seven innings of Game 2, which the Jaguars won 7-4.
Holland struck out five TSU batters, allowed three hits and walked 10 batters.
As one of three senior pitchers, Holland said the position can be demanding, but she relishes the leadership role.
"I feel like we have to set the tone for the future of Jaguar pitching," she said.
Holland, a communication major who eventually plans to go into sports broadcasting, said that the losses in Louisiana woke the team up.
"We definitely struggled last weekend in Louisiana; we lost ourselves," Holland said. "This game, sweeping them shows that we're back in it; it's always great to win the opener."
UHV 8, Texas Southern 6
UHV 400202X - 8 11 1
TSU 1010022 - 6 9 0
W: Savannah Crittenden, Kristina Droz; Madison Staton, Chelsea Guenther, Alaina Stubblefield (5). W: Crittenden (1-0). L: Staton (1-2). Highlights: (TSU) Guenther 2 for 4, 2 RBIs, Brianna Parker 2 for 4, RBI, Krystalani Yockman 2 for 4, RBI. (UHV) Shelby Smith 2 for 3, 3 RBIs, Marley Moerig 2 for 4, 2 RBIs, Alex Holland, 2 for 3, 2 RBIs. Record: UHV 2-3
UHV 7, Texas Southern 4
UHV 110410X - 7 6 3
TSU 0100201 - 4 3 1
W: Alex Holland, Shelby Smith; Jeniece Tillman (3), Brianna Bryant (3), Sammantha Jimenez (6), Kacey Creel. W: Holland (1-2). L: Bryant (1-1). Highlights: (TSU) Fitima Alvizo 0 for 2, RBI, Blayke McKissic 0 for 4, RBI, double, Haley Smith, 1 for 2. (UHV) Marley Moerig 1 for 3, 2 RBIs, double Krissa Powell, 0 for 4, RBI, single, Smith 0 for 1, double. Record: UHV 3-3