The ACU softball team traveled to Waco last weekend to compete at the Baylor Invitational where, once again, their score did not reflect their performance.
The Wildcats played the University of North Texas to start off the tournament. Pitcher Emily Seidel, senior from Burbank, California, pitched a strong game, giving up only three earned runs through seven complete innings. However, the Wildcat offense could not quite catch up, scoring only two runs on a wild pitch in the bottom of the fourth and a home run by Cara Hoover in the seventh.
After the late-inning rally against UNT, the Wildcats entered their next game against Oregon, nationally ranked at No. 2. However, strong pitching and hitting from Oregon quickly shut down ACU’s momentum, ending the game after 4 1/2 innings with an 8-0 score. Strong winds affected ACU’s outfielders’ read on fly balls, allowing several miscues with Oregon runners on base in addition to a two-run home run by Danica Mercado.
Seidel was tagged with both losses Friday, throwing all 11 innings on the day.
Junior transfer pitcher Julia Montoya started Saturday’s first game against Tulsa and also earned the loss. The 9-5 Hurricane would settle in quickly, scoring once in the third inning and five more times in the fourth. Seidel then entered the game, throwing three scoreless innings before allowing four more runs in the seventh.
Emily Watson, Tulsa’s starting pitcher, allowed four hits and struck out seven Wildcats in the game.
The ‘Cats would look to bounce back against No. 7 Baylor. They played one of their strongest defensive games of the season, but it wouldn’t be enough.
In their loss to the Bears, ACU started off with a 1-0 lead as Peyton Hedrick, freshman shortstop from Forney, hit an RBI double which allowed teammate Taylor Brown, sophomore outfielder form Richland Hills, to score in the top of the first inning.
The Bears quickly responded in the bottom of the second with a three-run home run. Baylor would then increase their lead to 4-1 in the bottom of the third when outfielder Kaitlyn Thumann led off with a single, stole second and scored on a throwing error by Hedrick.
Alyson Bishoff, freshman infielder from Belton, wouldn’t let the game end without a fight. She would hit a one-out, 0-2 count, solo home run to make the final score 4-2.
Seidel added another close loss to her record, giving up nine hits and three earned runs to the Bears over six innings.
ACU began its last scheduled game Sunday morning in a rematch against UNT hoping to pay them back, but heavy rains forced the game to be canceled in the third inning, ending the Wildcats’ hopes of finishing the tournament with a win.
However, Hedrick would earn all-tournament honors after she hit .500 with three doubles, one second run and one RBI.
ACU will travel to Jacksonville, Florida, this weekend to compete in the Jacksonville tournament.