Christian Rodriguez

Column: Softball exceeds expectations, falls short in conference tournament

“Promise” is the word that comes to mind when looking back on this year’s Texas State softball season.

Promise here refers to the future for a program led by Ariel Ortiz, freshman shortstop, and Randi Rupp, freshman pitcher, who earned All-Region honors as a freshman this past season. 

With so many relatively inexperienced players in the lineup, the Bobcats came into the season looking to prove a point. They were looking prove they would not be overwhelmed by the pressure.

Finishing with a 32-21 record, six wins higher than the previous season, the team exceeded expectations, in large part due to leadership from some of the more seasoned players on the team. 

Bobcats fall to Aggies in low-scoring matchup

In a rare occasion for a Wednesday game, the Texas State softball team took the role of visitor.

Texas State traveled to College Station to take on the No. 25 Aggies in a non-conference game that ended in a 2-1 loss for the Bobcats. The loss moves Texas State to a 29-20 overall record and snaps a seven-game winning streak.

Coach Ricci Woodard thought both teams had impressive pitching performances but the Bobcats’ lack of offense hurt them in the end.

“Both pitchers did a great job for us, and obviously Rachel Fox (Aggies senior) threw the ball great for them,” Woodard said. “It was a low-scoring game, and we just didn’t make the adjustments offensively that we needed to make to win the ball game.”

Beyond the game: Kaylee Garner, sophomore pitcher

Softball runs in the family for Kaylee Garner, sophomore pitcher.

Garner grew up in the small town of Danbury, a community known for its baseball and softball. Garner’s grandmother, Carol, pioneered the creation of Danbury’s first softball organization in the early 1970s.

Garner earned All-District honors in softball, basketball and volleyball at Danbury High School. She led the Lady Panthers to the class 2A State Championship in her sophomore year and was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.

In the same season, Garner’s longtime high school coach, Tim Timmons, began battling leukemia.

Rupp pitches complete game in 4-1 victory over Mountaineers

The Texas State softball team defeated the Appalachian State Mountaineers 4-1 in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader.

Randi Rupp, freshman pitcher, threw a complete game and led the Bobcats with 12 strikeouts.

Rupp gave up one hit throughout the game, coming in the sixth inning on a home run from Katie Mathewson, Mountaineers sophomore designated hitter. 

The Bobcats earned six hits as a team and were led by Kimberlin Naivar, sophomore outfielder, and Sara Rupp, freshman catcher, who combined for three hits and three runs batted in.

Texas State improves to a 9-6 conference record, while Appalachian State falls to 1-20.

Softball earns two wins in double-header

The Texas State softball team continued their winning streak on Saturday afternoon beating Appalachian State in both games of the double header.

The second inning was the turning point in the team's 6-4 victory, as the Bobcats scored five runs. After loading the bases Texas State earned back-to-back walks, bringing in two runs.

In the same inning Courtney Harris, senior third baseman, hit a double that brought in a pair of runs, followed by a sacrifice fly from Kendall Wiley, junior first baseman, giving Texas State a five run lead.

Randi Rupp, freshman pitcher, threw the first four innings of the game, allowing two hits and no earned runs. Rupp was replaced by Kaylee Garner, sophomore pitcher, in the top of the fifth inning.

Bobcats win on Sara Rupp walk-off

After a week without a game, the Texas State softball team had to shake off some rust in its 5-4 extra-innings win against the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders.

Texas State scored four runs in the first five innings of the game. The Bobcats held the Islanders to no runs in that stretch.

That changed in the bottom of the sixth inning when Brittney Morse, Islander sophomore designated player, hit a grand slam over the center field wall that tied the game at four.

The game went into extra innings after a scoreless seventh inning.

In the bottom of the eighth inning, Sara Rupp, freshman catcher, hit her first career walk-off home run over the left field wall.

Get to know: Sara Rupp, freshman catcher

CR: What is your biggest fear?

SR: I think my biggest fear is drowning. I like water, but I have to be able to touch the bottom, I’m not a very good swimmer.

 

CR: What’s your favorite movie of all time?

SR: Probably Furious 7. I went and saw it last week and liked it a lot.

 

CR: What did you want to be when you were little?

PITCH PERFECT: Randi Rupp pitches perfect game in 12-0 victory

Before Wednesday night, the last time a Texas State softball pitcher threw a perfect game was 2008.

Randi Rupp, freshman pitcher, changed that when she led her team to a 12-0 victory over Houston Baptist.

The freshman threw a total of 81 pitches in a shortened five-inning matchup, earning nine strikeouts and the first perfect game in seven years.

“Randi’s been a little frustrated with the way she’s been pitching,” said Coach Ricci Woodard. “I think that was big for her to let go of that frustration and come out and pitch and pitch well.”

Rupp understands success from the offense is important. Earlier in the season, Rupp threw a no-hitter against Louisiana Monroe, a game in which the offense put up nine runs.

Softball rebounds in second game of double-header

The Texas State softball team entered the second game of Saturday’s double-header against the Troy Trojans with something to prove.

The Bobcats defeated the Trojans 11-3 in a shortened six inning run-ruled game.

Coach Ricci Woodard reiterated the game plan that her team had been working on all week long after the Bobcats were handed a 3-1 defeat in Saturday’s first game.

“We knew what they were coming in here pitching wise with all week,” Woodard said. “That’s what we were working on and so it was one of those deals where we talked about now let’s make sure we’re executing and doing the same thing we did all week with it.”

Softball falls to Troy in first game of double-header

The Texas State softball team lost to the Troy Trojans 3-1 in the first game of Saturday’s double-header against the conference opponent.

The Bobcats had two hits on the game and struggled to find a rhythm throughout.

Hannah Day, Trojans freshman catcher, and Michelle Phelps, Trojans senior first baseman, led their team to victory with a combined four hits and two runs batted in.

Randi Rupp, freshman pitcher, threw a complete game, giving up five hits and two earned runs in the process.

The loss drops the Bobcats to 6-6 in conference play and widens the gap between the Troy Trojans, which now sit at 8-5 in the Sun Belt. 

The two teams are scheduled for two more games this weekend, with another today and one tomorrow. 

 

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