UHV splits doubleheader with UIW
It takes only a few pitches for UHV catcher Kristina Droz to have an idea of how the batter will swing.
"I can kind of tell by how they're standing to what they're going to do," Droz, a senior Jaguar, said. "These girls were harder to read, and they adjusted to our pitchers fast; our pitchers had to make their spots."
UHV (6-6) played The University of the Incarnate Word in a doubleheader Friday at Victoria Youth Sports Complex.
After an early lead in the first two innings, UHV ended up losing the first game 9-3.
In the second game, scoring was much closer with many runs made in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings.
UHV won 8-7 on a final run made by pitcher Alex Holland.
Droz directed plays from behind home plate for both games, which ended up lasting nearly five hours - something she is used to, she said.
"I'm a senior so I've done it for four years. So, it's routine now," Droz said.
Coach Lindsey Ortiz has said the catcher is the director, the "general" of the field.
"I try to stay loud and keep the infield positive and always focusing on the next play," Droz said.
However, no amount of directing can stop a determined batter sometimes.
UIW's Mikaela Flores hit the game's only home run in the seventh inning, tying the game 7-7.
Droz said that Holland pitched a riseball, but Flores "got on top of it."
"She battled for that one and she got it," Droz said.
Many UIW batters hit deep in the outfield, including a streak in the sixth inning where three straight batters hit doubles.
However, the Missouri City native was able to change the momentum of a sluggish second game for UHV with a double, which brought in two RBIs, bringing UHV to a four-point lead.
"We all just feed off each other when one of us makes a good play," Droz said. "The hype for them brings the whole team together."
Though the team pulled off a win in the second game, Ortiz said she is "sick of splitting games."
In the fourth inning of the first game, UIW scored eight runs, which dug the Jaguars into a hole they couldn't claw their way out of.
"It was a Murphy's Law kind of inning, where anything that could go wrong did go wrong," Ortiz said. "I hold them responsible though for not driving the car in the right direction, and they didn't stop the bleeding on time."
Droz and Ortiz agree that it wasn't only errors, but bad angles that contributed to the large run gap in the first game.
UHV played four out of its five pitchers Friday, first with Holland. Holland returned at the end of the second game to finish the night with a strikeout.
"The last game was truly a team effort," Ortiz said. "A lot of kids played, and I hope they can carry the momentum into tomorrow and have that team effort from the beginning."