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The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Three takeaways from Texas State softball’s 2-1 week

Mandalyn Lewallen
Texas State softball members gather during a break at the game against, Louisiana-Lafayette Saturday, April 13, 2024, at Bobcat Softball Complex.

Texas State softball went 2-1 in a three-game series against the University of Southern Mississippi this past week. Despite winning the series, Texas State was outscored 13-9 in the three-game set.

The Golden Eagles defeated the Bobcats 9-3 on Friday, and Texas State bounced back with a 2-1 victory on Saturday and a 4-3 victory on Sunday to clinch the series. 

Here are three takeaways from the Bobcats’ performance last week:


The defense needs to tidy up


Despite winning the series and being in a good position heading into the Sun Belt Conference Tournament, the Bobcats’ defense can use some improvement. In the series against Southern Mississippi, Texas State made five errors, compared to zero from the Golden Eagles. Three errors came in the game; one loss led to three unearned runs.

It’s difficult to be critical of Texas State as they have been making national rankings and have the second-best record in the Sun Belt Conference. However, errors have been costly for the Bobcats, as they are ranked eighth out of 12 teams in the Sun Belt Conference in fielding percentage.


Graduate student third baseman Sara Vanderford is ready for the postseason


Vanderford made history once again, this time becoming the all-time home run leader in Texas State softball history after she hit a solo home run in the rubber match on Sunday. The home run proved detrimental to the Golden Eagles’ hopes of winning the series, as the Bobcats ended up winning the deciding game by one run.

On the weekend, Vanderford went 4-11 with two home runs. After the weekend, her slash line sits at .355/.435/.697. With the Sun Belt and NCAA tournaments approaching, Vanderford continuing to reach base and slug at a high rate is a good sign.


Freshman pitcher Madison Azua will play a big part in the postseason


Azua will likely take the torch from Mullins next season to become the number-one starter on the pitching staff. However, the freshman is likely focused on the present, as the Bobcats have high hopes of making a deep run in the NCAA tournament.

Senior pitcher Jessica Mullins struggled uncharacteristically against Southern Mississippi, posting a 4.50 ERA in 9 ⅓ innings. Azua picked up the slack, allowing just one run in 8 ⅔ innings. 

Azua has proven to be a reliable number two option starter behind Mullins in the circle.

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