In a nail-biting three-game series against the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, the softball team (25-22, 13-10) put up a strong fight but ultimately fell in the series 1-2.
Game No. 1: UTA 4, Louisiana-Lafayette 3
Game one ended with a show-stopping finish to kick off the team's final home series of the season.
UTA was behind by a small margin early in the game as they were down 3-2 after three innings. The sluggers on the team stepped up when it mattered as junior outfielder Bri Burchianti went yard with a two-run walk-off home run to give the Mavericks the victory over the Ragin’ Cajuns.
Senior infielder Sandra Mendoza had tons of praise for her teammates both for their series performances and the overall season.
“Honestly I couldn’t have asked for anything [more] from them,” Mendoza said. “They left it all on the field, and I appreciate it so much.”
This game’s top performers were Mendoza with who went 1-3 with a run and Burchianti who went 1-2 with a pair of RBIs and runs.
Freshman pitcher Randi Phillips improved to 15-8. In her seven innings of play, Phillips surrendered three runs off five hits while walking four.
Game No. 2 Louisiana-Lafayette 6, UTA 1
In game two, the Mavericks kept their composure until the end but had trouble making solid contact on the ball, scoring just one run on five hits.
The team trailed 6-1 after a rough third and fourth inning, and that’s where the score remained to end the game.
Sophomore pitcher JoJo Valencia pitched four innings and allowed three earned runs on seven hits. Senior pitcher Alyssa Chavez tossed three innings, and allowed no runs on two hits.
Game No. 3: Louisiana-Lafayette 3, UTA 2
The final game of the series was a nail-biter like the first as the teams needed a total of 12 innings to find a victor.
In the bottom of the fourth, sophomore catcher Reagan Wright launched a solo home run to left field to put UTA on the board.
The Mavericks trailed 2-1 entering the seventh inning, but an RBI single from Burchianti drove in junior outfielder Krista Rude and tied the game 2-2.
The score remained knotted at 2-2 until a late fielding error allowed the unearned run to cross home and gave the Ragin’ Cajuns a one-run lead.
UTA tried to fight its way back in the bottom of the 12th but were unable to, falling to Louisiana-Lafayette with a final score of 3-2.
The Mavericks' pitching kept them in the game until the very end as Phillips threw a full 12 innings, allowing just three runs on five hits.
Head coach Peejay Brun was not daunted by her team falling behind in the series. She instead praised her team’s resilience and refusal to lose its composure when the game looked out of hand.
“They have a never-ending jar of fight,” Brun said. “These kids play with a lot of heart.”
Next up, the softball team closes out its regular season with a three-game series against Texas State University. The first game is slated for 4 p.m. Friday in San Marcos, Texas.