Bearkats ready for Big 12 matchup

The SHSU softball team heads to Waco Thursday night to face non-conference Big 12 foes, the Lady Bears from Baylor. SHSU and Baylor will meet for the 55th and 56th times in a doubleheader at Getterman Stadium.

Sam Houston holds a 28-26 edge in Baylor’s second most played series behind the University of Texas-Arlington. This dates back to a 6-0 SHSU victory in Huntsville in 1979. The Lady Bears are 2-8 in the Big 12 Conference.

Players to look out for from Baylor are Kelly Osburn and Kim Wilmoth, who combine to lead the Big 12 in six of 12 offensive statistical categories.

Osburn leads the conference in base percentage and shares the lead in runs and walks. Wilmoth leads in stolen bases and shares the conference lead in hits and triples.

The Lady Bears played their 100th game at Getterman Stadium in the second game of a doubleheader with Texas Tech on Tuesday. Baylor won the first game 2-0, but lost 1-0 in the nightcap.

Baylor is 15-4 at Getterman Stadium this season and 14-0 in non-conference games.

Sam Houston lost the series against Baylor last season 8-2 in the first game and 8-0 in the second game in Waco.

The Bearkats are coming off a series with the University of Texas- San Antonio, taking two of three from the Roadrunners.

“Baylor’s having a rough season this year,” said SHSU pitcher Rachel Atzenhoffer. “But every time we play them, they play really well.

“We’re not going to go out there looking to play a bad team, we’re going to play as if they’re one of the top teams in the nation,” she said.

Atzenhoffer (7-9) allowed only four hits against UTSA last weekend and struck out four. SHSU is 10-7 this year in conference play.

This weekend the Bearkats return to conference play against the Northwestern State Demons from Louisiana. The Demons are 8-7 in the conference.

Northwestern swept the Bearkats the last time they met, but the Demons are not experiencing the same successful season as they did last year. The team finished 22-5 in the Southland Conference last season.

“It’s going to be a good series,” Atzenhoffer said. “We’re third and they’re fourth in the conference. We’re going to come out like we did against UTSA swinging and pitching.” Players to look out for from the Demon’s roster are pitchers Loni Rasberry and Crista Miller, and hitters Nicole Martin and Lindsey Danzy.

Rasberry (9-5) has a 1.35 ERA this season with 67 strikeouts. Rasberry pitched a shutout against Centenary College last week 4-0. Miller pitched two shutout games against SHSU last season 8-0 and 3-0. She is only 5-10 this year.

The Demons are a young team with only two seniors on the roster. Martin, a sophomore, leads the team in RBIs this season with 15. Danzy, a junior, bats .364 and has 12 RBIs so far.

The weekend series at home against the Demons begins Saturday at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Sunday’s game is at 1 p.m.

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