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Turnin' Two with Allison McClain
Tuesday, March 4, 2008

3/4/08

 

Coming off of two big wins against Grambling State and an even better win against I-20 rival Louisiana Tech this past week, we seemed to be sailing smoothly and on the right track nearing Summit League play.

 

All three games tested our mental and physical strengths as we battled near exhaustion and fatigue from several long weeks. Heading into last Tuesday, we were riding an exciting win against Boston University in the University of Houston Marriott Classic.

 

After taking both games from Grambling, a 2-1 and a 5-1 win; we headed back to Shreveport for a day to prepare for our home opener on our field for the first time all season. Being on the road for the first eighteen games, then playing at home against no one better than Louisiana Tech was a much-needed moment.

 

We worked hard and had our most effective and exciting practice thus far last Wednesday in preparation for the Lady Techsters. Our new facilities are finally completed with an enhanced look to our softball field. The new dugouts look amazing and I know for a fact it means so much more to play on a field that compliments our style of play.

 

Thursday came and we were ready and energized to open our home facilities to the community and softball fans and of course take another win from Louisiana Tech (two in one week).

 

By far the game had to be one of the quickest I have played in a while. Less than 90 minutes, we were walking off the field in smiles after a 1-0 win over the team from Ruston, Louisiana. Several key plays, a few clutch hits, and a dominating pitching performance proved to be all we needed to sneak past and build on our win streak making it four wins long.

 

Freshman Bonnie Matak stepped up big and delivered a huge leadoff double, which in turn resulted in a run sacrificed off a fly ball to right field by senior Lauren Flowers. Defensively, we were unstoppable, making diving catches, snags at first base, and taking away the slap offense that La Tech relies on so often.

 

I can’t praise sophomore pitcher Ryan Thacker enough right now. Not only did she throw a shutout (once again), she pitched a one-hitter, walking only one batter, and striking out six. She is continuing to be a dominating force on the mound and has been able to keep us in several games lately. Her composure and ability to throw many different pitches to any batter has led us to this win streak thus far. Once again she was named Summit League Pitcher of the Week, so congrats to her. It might seem silly, but being my roommate this year, Ryan and I have a pretty tight bond on and off the field, as we have been friends since our traveling ball days at the age of ten.

 

We actually were off this past weekend, as we have been on the road playing in several different cities for the past month. A well-deserved break was much needed as I know many of my teammates caught up on sleep and studies and some were able to make the trip to their home towns to visit families.

 

As you may assume, being a collegiate athlete on a team, you have an unbreakable bond with teammates. You are with them everyday of the school year, on the field, off the field, in the cafeteria, and in the dorm rooms. If you have been to one of our games, you might have noticed our support for one another...a great hit, a sac bunt, a walk, a strikeout, a diving catch, or something as simple as a steal. We are there for one another and we plan to take our commitment to this team into Summit League play in just two weeks now and break loose with some big wins.

 

But before Summit League play opens up, we have a job to take care of this week. We host Grambling on Wednesday in a double-header beginning at 5 p.m. On Thursday, we pack up and travel to Stillwater, Oklahoma to play in Oklahoma State’s home tournament facing SFA, Texas Wesleyan, and Ok State this weekend beginning Friday. A little revenge is wanted for the Cowgirls from Stillwater as we plan to face them for the third and fourth time this season.

 

Wish us luck and come out Wednesday at home and see us in action!

See you here next week!

 

“I come to play everyday.” –David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox

 

For the love of the game,

-Allison McClain