Feb. 15, 2014
AUSTIN - For the second straight game, Louisiana Tech gave 7th ranked Kentucky a scare before the Lady Techsters fell 6-3 Saturday at the Texas Classics in Austin.
Tech (2-6) fell earlier in the day to 16th ranked Texas 7-2 and will face IPFW Sunday at 12 p.m. in the consolation game of the three-day tournament.
"I was pretty disappointed after the loss to Texas," said Tech head coach Mark Montgomery. "And I told the players how upset I was. I knew we were better than what we showed. They responded. You never want to lose a game, but I can't tell you how proud I was of our effort against Kentucky tonight. We just outhit one of the top teams in the country and we did it against their ace.
"Our approach was great. Our energy and focus were great. We gave ourselves a chance. I told them that this type of effort was good enough to beat anyone in Conference USA. That's what we need to work towards on a more consistent basis."
No. 7 Kentucky 6, LA Tech 3
Louisiana Tech recorded one of its most impressive offensive games of the young season, touching Kentucky ace Kelsey Nunley (4-0) for nine hits and three runs in the 6-3 loss.
The Lady Techsters played toe-to-toe with the undefeated Wildcats for the second straight day, after losing to UK 1-0 on Friday.
Bianca Duran (1-4) got the start in the circle for the Lady Techsters and kept UK off balance, retiring the first 11 batters she faced. However, UK All-American candidate Griffin Joiner broke up the no-hitter with a solo home run with two outs in the bottom of the fourth inning as UK took a 1-0 lead.
Tech had a chance to take an early lead as Janine Godwin started the third inning off with a single down the left field line. After advancing to second on a ground out, Godwin tried to score on a single by Kristen Miles. However, UK made a perfect throw home as Godwin was tagged out on a bang-bang play.
Tech answered in the top of the sixth against Nunley. Anna Cross singled and one out later Erin Kipp singled to put runners on first and second. Tufi then drove home Tech's first run of the game with an RBI double to right field, cutting the deficit to 4-1. One out later, Alayna Kipp singled to right field, plating two more runs, making it 4-3.
The bottom half of the frame saw the only error of the game cost the Lady Techsters two runs. After a leadoff single by Christian Stokes off of Cross, who came on in relief of Tufi, the Tech infield misplayed a ground ball when Courtney Lowe dropped the throw to second by shortstop Kaitlyn Williams. Cross retired the next two batters, but with two outs, Kyrstal Smith singled down the left field line, plating the two runners and increasing the score to 6-3.
Tech managed only one base runner in the top of the seventh inning as Nunley ended the Lady Techsters come-back and picked up her fourth win of the season.
Duran (1-4) took the loss, allowing only two runs on two hits and no walks in 4.0 innings of action.
Offensively, Tech was led by Erin Kipp (2 hits, 1 run), Miles (1 hit, 1 run), Tufi (1 hit, 1 RBI), Tori Charters (1 run), Duran (1 hit), Alayna Kipp (1 hit, 2 RBI), Hailey Winter (1 hit), Godwin (1 hit) and Cross (1 hit).
No. 16 Texas 7, LA Tech 2
One bad inning spoiled LA Tech's chance to pull an upset against the 16th ranked Longhorns.
The first five batters recorded hits against Duran, who started in the circle, before Tufi came on in relief. Tufi then surrendered an RBI single and a sacrifice fly before getting out of the frame, but the damage was done as UT led 5-1.
Tufi then sailed through the next two innings for Tech, preventing Texas from adding onto its lead.
Tech had a great opportunity to plate a pair of runs in the top of the third inning as Miles singled and Tori Charters reached on an error. However, with two outs, Texas centerfielder Brejae Washington dove to snare a hard line drive to deep left centerfield by Duran, ending the frame and keeping the score at 5-1.
The Lady Techsters threatened again in the fifth. Miles singled and Taylor Penn walked and then Duran singled up the middle, scoring Miles from second and cutting the deficit to 5-2. Hailey Winter drew a two-out walk to load the bases but Longhorn reliever Tiara Davis struck out Alayna Kipp to end the threat.
Texas added single runs in both the fifth and sixth innings as the Longhorns defeated the Lady Techsters 7-2.
Duran took the loss in the circle, allowing five runs on five hits. Tufi and Cross came on in relief and held UT to two runs on eight hits over the final 6.0 innings of action.
Offensively, Tech was led by Miles (3 hits, 2 runs), Duran (2 hits, 2 RBI) and Katelynn Hill (1 hit).