Texas Softball Ends Season with 10-1 Loss to Louisiana-Lafayette in NCAA Regional Final

(Image via University of Texas Athletics)
(Image via University of Texas Athletics)

The Texas Longhorn softball team dropped their NCAA regional final game 10-1 to Louisiana-Lafayette on Sunday Afternoon, ending their 2014 season. The Longhorns were the No. 2 seed in the regional which was hosted by Louisiana-Lafayette, the top seed.

The Longhorns (35-23, 12-6 Big 12)  won their first game of the regional 1-0 against Mississippi State on Friday evening. On Saturday afternoon, the Longhorns fell 2-3 to Louisiana-Lafayette. The Longhorns played Mississippi State on Saturday evening in the regional's elimination game and defeated the Bulldogs 4-3 to advance to the final game. Texas Southern was the fourth team in the regional but was eliminated after falling to Louisiana-Lafayette and Mississippi State.

In the regional final on Sunday afternoon, the Texas offense could not hit off the Ragin' Cajuns' starting pitcher, Christina Hamilton, who held the Longhorns to only four hits and one run. Junior Gabby Smith scored the Longhorns' only run of the afternoon, a solo home run in the fourth inning.

In the circle for the Longhorns, freshman Tiarra Davis started for the Longhorns but was relived in the third by Smith. Davis surrendered three runs and gave up four hits and earned the loss for the afternoon. Smith pitched for four innings and gave up five hits and three runs in the effort. Freshman pitcher Lauren Slatten came to pitch in the seventh inning, but after surrendering four runs and three hits, was replaced by Smith who pitched the final two outs.

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In game one, Davis threw a complete game in the circle for the Longhorns during their 1-0 victory over Mississippi State. Davis surrendered only four hits and a walk and finished with seven strikeouts against the Bulldogs. Senior Brejae Washington scored the Longhorns' only run of the evening off a solo home run in the third inning.

The Longhorns faced the top-seeded Louisiana-Lafayette in game two where they lost 3-2. The Longhorns were leading until the seventh when the Ragin' Cajuns scored two runs in the seventh for the walk-off victory. Louisiana-Lafayette loaded the bases before scoring off a single and a bases-loaded walk. Senior Taylor Thom had a home run out of left field in the fourth inning to put the Longhorns up until the seventh. The Texas offense produced only three hits Saturday afternoon. Davis earned the loss after surrendering eight hits six walks while striking out five. It was Davis's second complete game of the regional.

In game three, the Longhorns faced Mississippi State in the elimination game. On the offense, sophomore Lindsey Stephens led game three with a three-run home run in seventh inning of the contest with two outs. The Longhorns earned six hits in the 4-3 victory. Smith started in the circle for the Longhorns, her first post-season start, and picked up the win. She struck out eight in her complete game effort while giving up four hits and two walks and only two earned runs.

The Texas offense finished the season with a team batting average of .334, a school record. Stephens finished the season with 134 total bases, a Texas single-season record previously held by Thom and former Longhorn Lexy Bennett (132 each). Thom was named the Big 12 Player of the Year for the 2014 season.

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