Needing a series win to stay alive in the Lone Star Conference South Division race, the ACU softball team capitalized and won two out of three games against Texas A&M University-Kingsville on Friday and Saturday at Wells Field.
It was a tale of two teams in Friday’s doubleheader, as the ‘Cats dominated the Javelinas in all facets of the first game, winning via the mercy rule 9-0. In the second game, however, errors plagued the team, as it fell to TAMU-K 8-4.
Sitting at 23-23, 8-6 prior to Saturday’s game, the Wildcats were desperate for a win to stay in the hunt for the LSC Conference tournament. ACU prevailed 8-0, taking the series with the win. Also as a result of the win, the Wildcats claimed at least sole possession of third place in the conference standings.
“That was a big win for us,” said Head Coach Bobby Reeves. “It’s a confidence thing. The win definitely came at an opportune time. That win and series, for us, was just what the doctor ordered.”
Freshman outfielder Lyndi Smith and senior shortstop Ashley Calles each hit two homeruns and went 3-3 at the plate. Calles, filling the designated hitter role, finished with four RBIs, while Smith had two of her own.
Brittany Rexroat won her eleventh game of the season on the mound for the ‘Cats on Saturday as she went the distance allowing only three hits, while striking out two and walking one.
“That was as good as I’ve seen Brittany throw all year,” said Wildcat catcher Erin Gilliland. “She had everything working and going her way,” Wildcat catcher Erin Gilliland said. “The whole pitching staff did very well this weekend, and that’s a big reason we were successful.”
Texas A&M-Kingsville never posed a threat to ACU, only stranding four runners on base in Saturday’s contest.
In the opener on Friday, the ACU offense found its mark once again. Eight starters recorded a hit for the Wildcats en route to the 9-0 victory. Three players, Erin Gilliland, Melissa Mendoza and Ashley Calles, had a pair of RBIs in the game, which was called because of the mercy rule. Starter Brittany Rexroat (10-7) struck out five batters, not walking any, on her way to the shutout win.
Game two proved unwelcoming to the ‘Cats, as they allowed an uncharacteristic six hits and three errors. The Javelinas took advantage of the errors, accumulating eight runs and 12 hits.
On Monday, the ‘Cats swept St. Edwards, winning both games of the doubleheader. In the opener, a five run third inning propelled the team. Lyndi Smith hit a two run single before Erin Gilliland cranked a three run homerun over the left field fence to make it 7-0. Pitcher Brittany Rexroat won her third game in the past four days, going six innings and allowing seven hits en route to the 9-4 win.
In the nightcap, Tiana Tuinei drove in the walk-off, game-winning run in the bottom of the ninth to secure the win and sweep for the Wildcats behind a come from behind 7-6 win for ACU.
The Wildcats trailed 5-3 going into the bottom of the seventh, but rallied to tie it up and send the game to extra innings. St. Edwards scored in the top of the eighth but ACU answered with a sacrifice fly from Gilliland in the bottom half of the inning to tie the game. Tuinei then finished the game off with an infield single that scored Smith.
ACU will travel to San Angelo to take on Angelo State Thursday and Friday in a three game series.