It’s that time of the year at just about every college in America, when baseball and softball start their seasons while men and women’s basketball attempt to finish their seasons strong as the conference tournaments draw nearer. Texas State University is no different, but unfortunately for Bobcat fans the first WAC weekend with all four sports didn’t go so well, the four teams were a combined 3-6 on games played Saturday and Sunday.
The softball team traveled to Lafayette, La, to take on No. 15 University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Mississippi Valley State in their second set of games this season. The team was looking to bounce back after losing all five the previous weekend in Houston, Tx, at the University of Houston Tournament. The Bobcats did have some unexpected suspensions before the trip to Houston that obviously had an effect on the team’s chemistry, but four of the seven players suspended did return to action after not appearing in any box scores. Yet to see any field action through nine games are Selena Hernandez, Ali Akina, and Brittney Garcia.
The team took on the 15th ranked Rajun Cajuns Saturday in the first of four games, and could not keep up with their hot bats and got out-hit 10-1, and lost 9-1. The girls did bounce back in Saturday’s second game, beating Mississippi Valley State 7-5 thanks to two three-run innings and a steady defensive effort through seven innings. The team carried that momentum into Sunday’s rematch with MVSt, and won another close game 5-4, thanks in part to another outstanding Ashley Wright performance, who was pitching her second game in a row. Unfortunately the girls could not capitalize on the two game winning streak when they had their rematch with ULL on Sunday, losing a hard-fought battle 2-3. The team now sits at 2-7 overall with the Texas Shootout approaching quickly, when the Bobcats will host UNT, Baylor, Texas Tech, and SHS in a four game stint.
Bobcat baseball got off to a rocky start in their three game home-opener this past weekend. In their season opener the team fell behind 2-0 thanks to two Missouri State runs in the third before mounting a comeback to tie the game at two apiece in the seventh. The game went to extra innings and the Bears eventually squeaked out a 3-2 win thanks to an RBI single in the eleventh. Saturday’s game versus Tulane was much of the same story offensively, but thanks to an outstanding seven-plus inning, four hit afternoon from Taylor Black the Bobcats sailed to a 2-0 victory. Sunday’s shootout between one time South Land Conference foe Sam Houston State caught everyone by surprise. The Bearkats led 8-1 before an eight-run seventh inning gave the Bobcats an improbable lead going into the eighth. The effort and will to comeback were present, but the Bearkats managed to score twice in the ninth thanks to three base hits including the game-clinching RBI double. Bearkats win 9-10, and the Bobcats drop to 1-2.
The club traveled to Waco, Texas, Tuesday night to take on the Big-12 Baylor Bears, hoping to get back to .500 on the year. Both teams struck early scoring one apiece in the first inning, but it would be Baylor that continued the momentum achieved early on by scoring four more runs in the second. One of those four runs came in on a Andrew Bose wild pitch and he was yanked shortly afterwards. The Bobcats used six pitchers in this game, and no Bobcat pitcher lasted more than two innings. Texas State managed another run in the fifth and the ninth, but came up short, losing 3-6 and move to 1-3 in 2013. The Bobcats will play Houston in a three-game series in San Marcos at Bobcat Ballpark starting this Friday at 6:30 pm CST.
The Women’s Basketball team lost 65-74 in a hard-fought battle in San Antonio on Saturday, where poor shooting in the second half proved to be their downfall despite a promising start. The Bobcats led 40-33 at the half-way point after shooting 77 percent in the first 20 minutes, only missing on five of their 22 field goal attempts. A quick 28-6 run by the roadrunners in the second half put the game out of reach, and the Bobcats never shot their way back into the game, totaling a miserable 31.6 percent from the floor as a team in the second half. Ashley Ezeh made her return after being out of action for a month, she put in 13 points and grabbed three rebounds. The team will face Houston Baptist Wednesday in their last non-conference match up of the season.
While the women’s team traveled to San Antonio, the men’s team had the luxury of hosting the roadrunners in the friendly confides of Strahan Coliseum on Saturday after the previous Saturday’s 69-84 loss to La Tech. In this season’s first match-up, the Bobcats needed overtime to snatch their first ever WAC conference victory. The roadrunners had not forgotten about the previous game either, coming out strong on the boards and taking open jump shots on the offensive end. At one point UTSA’s lead ballooned to 46-15 thanks to uncanny rebounding and defending. The rebound tally reached 19-3 in favor of the roadrunners halfway through the first half. To say I had never seen anything like it would be an understatement. Texas State found themselves down 26 at halftime, and despite a strong surge to cut the lead to single digits with eight minutes to go, the Bobcats’ countless first-half miscues, missed lay-ups and free throws down the stretch were too much to overcome. Final score 62-73. Texas State will take a break from conference play to participate in ESPN’s Bracketbusters. They will travel to Beaumont, Texas, to take on Pat Knight and the Lamar Cardinals.