Softball finishes their tournament slate of games

Dalton Hartmann, Staff Writer

The UTSA Roadrunner softball team (12-8) finished their last tournament of the season when they played the Samford University Bulldogs and the Jacksonville State Gamecocks in Jacksonville, Alabama.

The ‘Runners started the Jacksonville State Invite tournament with a win against the Bulldogs. The Bulldogs went up early after scoring the first run in the fourth by stealing a home run. The ‘Runners were down until the sixth when Reily Grunberg got hit to the left side of the field, allowing Gabby Leggington to score. The ‘Runners did not stop there. Taylor Medina hit a ground ball to shortstop, which allowed Kindell Brooks to score, and Tori Villarreal hit a ball left scoring Grunberg. The Bulldogs were unable to score in the seventh, leaving the score at 3-1.

The second game the ‘Runners played was against the Gamecocks in which they were unable to match the Gamecocks’ scoring, resulting in a loss. This game looked to be a close one with both teams playing great defense until the third when the ‘Runners were out-scored 3-6. In the fourth, the Gamecocks made another run, making the game 5-11, which was too big a lead for the ‘Runners to overcome. The final score was 7-14.

For the third game of the tournament, the ‘Runners faced the Bulldogs once again. The ‘Runners got down early with the Bulldogs scoring four runs in the second. The ‘Runners eventually matched their four runs after Hannah Boring hit a homerun with the bases loaded, allowing Villarreal, Medina and Grunberg to score, making the score 4-4. However, this was the only scoring play for the ‘Runners and after Bulldogs player Timberlyn Shurbutt hit back-to-back homeruns in the fourth and sixth. The game ended in a loss for the ‘Runners, 4-10.

The final game of the tournament was a rematch against the Gamecocks. For most of the game, both defenses were oppressive, only allowing six hits to each team. The Gamecocks got a hit to right field, letting them post the first run of the game. The ‘Runners struck back in the fifth with Celeste Loughman hitting a homerun, making the score 1-1. The Gamecocks scored three runs in the sixth, which put massive pressure on the ‘Runners going into the final inning. To open the seventh, Boring hit a single to left field followed by a pop fly from Loughman, getting the ‘Runners their first out. Madison Washington walked which advanced Boring to second. With two ‘Runners on base, Brooks hit a ball out left, which allowed Boring and Washington to score, making the score 3-4. The ‘Runners looked good again after Medina took another walk with two ‘Runners on base. Unfortunately, a pop fly and a strike out ended the game before the ‘Runners could come back, 3-4.

The ‘Runners finished their final tournament of the season 1-3 and are not looking forward to divisional play. With a record of 12-8, the ‘Runners are the third ranked team in Conference-USA, only behind the University of North Texas Mean Green and Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles.

The ‘Runners will face the University of the Incarnate Word Cardinals on March 4 followed by three games against the Mean Green March 6-8 at Roadrunner Field.