UHV loses in extra innings to split doubleheader
After three and a half hours and 11 innings, the game finally went final.
Unfortunately for UHV, the outcome was a heartbreaker.
The ninth-ranked Jaguars suffered a 7-3 home loss to Our Lady of the Lake University on Saturday after entering the seventh with a 1-0 lead and ending the inning with the bases loaded.
The score remained tied 1-1 until the 11th inning, when each of the first six Saints batters crossed home plate, giving OLLU a commanding 7-1 advantage heading into the bottom of the inning.
Kori Kocian hit a two-RBI shot to pull the Jaguars within four runs, but UHV could get no closer.
Despite the defeat, Jaguars head coach Keri Lambeth found positives in her team's performance.
"We are the type of team that is going to fight to the finish no matter what the score is," the coach said. "I'm just super proud of everything they did tonight, and I know this is going to make us stronger as a team.
"This is just a hiccup, it is nothing long term."
The Jaguars posted the first run of the game in the fourth inning as Ashley Winegeart hit a sacrifice fly to send Bre'Neka O'Bryant home from third base.
OLLU finally responded in the top of the seventh to tie the game 1-1, but it appeared the Jaguars would pull out the victory in regulation as Saints pitcher Maegan Ramirez walked three of the first five batters she faced to load the bases.
But UHV could not capitalize as pinch hitter Tara Williams struck out, leaving the all the runners stranded.
The teams went scoreless over the next three innings before the Saints' bats came alive in the 11th.
With one out, Kara Waukau kept hope alive for the Jaguars by hitting a double in the bottom of the inning, and Porsha Ramos was walked.
Then Kocian delivered a deep shot to left field, sending both runners home, but the senior outfielder was tagged out as she slid into third base.
It was a call Lambeth did not agree with.
"She was totally in safe," the coach said. "The blue has the ultimate decision and he made the call and there is nothing I can do about it.
"It was an awesome hit, and I knew she was going to come through."
In the following at bats, Marley Moehrig recorded a triple and Ariel Gomez was walked, but neither could advance as Kelly King hit a fly ball to left field for the final out of the game.
Dawn Villegas pitched 10 innings before being replaced by Emily Bergstrom.
But the Jaguars' marathon did not begin in the first inning.
The contest was the second game of a doubleheader.
In the opener, UHV cruised to a 7-3 victory.
Brittany Arredondo led the way by going 3 for 4 with a run and a RBI, while King was 2 for 4 with a run and a RBI.
The Jaguars (20-6 overall) are off until Tuesday, when they host Concordia University in a doubleheader beginning at 3 p.m. Sunday's doubleheader against Texas Southern was canceled.