AUSTIN (May 12, 2013) -- Five Baylor errors and 10 runners left on base proved too costly for the 16th-ranked Lady Bears (39-15, 10-8) in a 2-1 nine-inning loss at No. 6 Texas (44-8, 14-4) Sunday afternoon in Austin. Whitney Canion struck out eight, throwing 178 pitches in a tough-luck defeat.
“Whitney was a warrior in the circle today,” head coach Glenn Moore said. “Our defense let her down too many times, but I was proud of the way we bounced back and responded. While it wasn’t the outcome we wanted, this team is fighting and I believe we are ready for postseason play.”
Canion (23-8) took the loss, striking out eight, walking three (one intentionally) giving up two runs and giving up nine hits. Only four of UT’s nine hits reached the outfield.
Sarah Smith and Jordan Strickland each totaled two hits apiece, combining for four of the five BU hits.
Texas loaded the bases with not outs in the bottom of the ninth before Kim Bruins hit a single to right for the 2-1 win. Hoagland led off the inning with a single to short and advanced to second on a bad throw from Strickland. Washington followed with a bunt-single and the bases were loaded as Thom got hit by a pitch.
The Lady Bears stranded a golden opportunity to score early, leaving the bases loaded in the top of the first. Kathy Shelton led off the inning with a walk and advanced to second on a wild pitch with one away. Kaitlyn Thumann drew a walk and Smith singled to right center to load the bases with one out, but a pair of strikeouts ended the threat.
The Baylor defense let Canion down in the first with three errors. Taylor Hoagland led off the inning with a double and reached third when Smith committed her first error of the season on a sac bunt attempt. When Washington took off to steal second, Hosack fired to third to try and pick Hoagland, but the ball went into left field to plate a run. Hosack made up for the second error on Smith on the next play, picking off Washington at 2nd for the first out and Canion got Thom swinging for the second out. A tough-luck single against Canion that grounded toward second, wasn’t charged at, and saw Strickland come across the diamond to try and make the play, put a runner at first. An error at second followed before Canion got the strikeout needed to end the inning.
Canion worked out of a jam in the second, as Strickland dropped a pop up at short to begin the inning before getting a strikeout for the first out. Following an infield single, Canion got a strikeout and fly out to center to end the inning, keeping the deficit at one.
The Lady Bears evened the game with two outs in the fourth, as Strickland’s hustle down the line legged out an infield single to lead off the inning. Hays stepped up and fouled a bunt attempt that was caught by a diving third baseman followed by a strikeout from Hosack for the second out. With two away, Canion hit a grounder to third that was thrown wide of the bag, allowing Strickland to reach third, but the throw home got between the legs of the catcher and Strickland came in to tie the game at one.
Canion worked her way out of another jam in the bottom of the fourth, as the bases were loaded with two outs before Holly Holl made a great defensive play to end the threat. A leadoff double looked to be all UT would get after back-to-back strikeouts by Canion, but an intentional walk and bunt-single loaded the bases before Holl’s defensive play.
Baylor seemed to have a run on the board in the fifth when Smith roped a one-out double to left center with runners on first and second. Holl and Thumann each walked before Smith hit it towards the gap in left center. The center fielder tried to make a play on it, holding Holl, but it dropped and she was thrown out trying to score.
The Lady Bears had runners at second and third with one out when Kelsi Kettler came in to pinch hit. With one strike, Hays took off from third, but Kettler was unable to get the bat on the ball, and Hays was caught off the bag and tagged out. Kettler flew out to end the inning.
Baylor started a two-out rally in the seventh, when Thumann drew her third walk of the game, followed by a Smith hit-by-pitch, setting a new program single-season record (13). Strickland followed with another infield single, beating a throw from shortstop to load the bases for Hays, who drove a deep fly to center, but it was caught on the warning track to strand the bases loaded.