Contagious hitting propels UHV to sweep over Our Lady of the Lake
April 10, 2014 at 9:02 p.m.
Updated April 9, 2014 at 11:10 p.m.
Hitting is contagious, according to UHV coach Lindsey Ortiz.
"Someone gets a good hit, and the girls are really good at making it trickle down the lineup," Ortiz said after the Jaguars (26-11) swept Our Lady of the Lake University (23-9-1) in Thursday's doubleheader at the Youth Sports Complex.
The theory proved to be especially true in the fifth inning of the first game against the Saints, when freshman Shelby Smith hit a double, bringing in Krissa Powell and Rachel Laird to grab a four-run lead.
A batter later, senior Marley Moehrig stepped up to the plate and hit a home run over the left-field fence, bringing in Smith and making the score 5-1.
"I think (a good hit) sparks a fire," said Smith, UHV's first baseman. "Doubles and home runs show us that we got this; it's exactly what we need to win so it works."
The Jaguars won the first game 8-1.
Smith went 4 for 4 in the first game with a double and two RBIs.
The LaPorte native struck out her first time at bat in Game 2.
"I struck out on a rise ball - it's the worst feeling in the world swinging and missing a pitch," Smith said. "I just try to make contact."
After a triple by Powell and doubles by Laird and Alex Holland, Smith stepped up to the plate again in the second inning.
Slamming a double down center field, Smith brought in two runners and hit second base and eventually became the fifth run scored in the 8-0 shutout.
Ortiz said that what makes the team so good is its energy throughout the game.
"They keep going every inning - their energy and fight wins the game," Ortiz said.
The Jaguars lacked some energy April 5, when they hosted No. 4-ranked LSU-Alexandria, she said.
Ortiz said that the first game of the doubleheader was great despite UHV losing 2-1.
"They came out flat in the second game," she said. "They learned to come out here hungry and focused every game with every opponent."
Freshman pitcher Griffin Gilbert said the losses to the Lady Generals brought back UHV's team effort.
"We're getting the hits and runs across the board, and it brought our fire back," Gilbert said. "All in all, we've been doing better as a team this week."
Gilbert pitched all five innings of the second game, striking out five Saint batters.
Being six pitchers deep on the team, Gilbert called the program "incredible."
"To have six pitchers who can all hold their weight," she said, "coach Ferg (Ortiz) and coach (Emily) Bergstrom do a good job of letting us all pitch in practice and games."
UHV will play a doubleheader Tuesday against Texas A&M-Kingsville starting at 5 p.m. in Kingsville.
The Jaguars have yet to face the Javelinas this season.
"They always have a good squad," Ortiz said. "Hopefully, we will play them as good as we played today."
UHV 8, OLLU 1
OLLU 010 000 0 - 1 5 2
UHV 001 052 x - 8 10 2
W - Savannah Crittenden 6 IP, 4K
L - Katrisha Arocha 5 IP, 5K, 2BB
Highlights: Marley Moehrig 1 for 3, HR, 2 RBIs, Shelby Smith 4 for 4, 2B, 2 RBIs, Kristina Droz 1 for 4, 2B
UHV 8, OLLU 0
OLLU 000 00 - 0 2 4
UHV 140 3x - 8 7 0
W - Griffin Gilbert 4IP, 5K, 3BB
L - Meagan Ramirez 3.1IP, 3K, 2BB
Highlights: Krissa Powell 1 for 3, 3B, Shelby Smith 2 for 3, 2-2B, 2 RBIs, Ashley Winegeart 3 for 3, 2-2B, 2 RBIs
Records: UHV 26-11, OLLU 23-9-1