Racers leave Bulldog Battle hurting, prepare for Arkansas

Senior infielder Christian Cox, from Magnolia, Ky., throws a practice pitch. The softball team will compete in the Magic City Classic today through Sunday. || Taylor McStoots/The News

The Racer softball team will play its second tournament of the season Feb. 22-24 in Fayetteville, Ark. The Racers finished the Bulldog Battle at Mississippi State last weekend with a record of 1-3. Even with three losses, Head Coach Kara Amundson is pleased with what she saw from the team.

“We saw some really good things out of the team this past week for being out there for the first weekend,” Amundson said.

Murray State will play against the host team, the University of Arkansas, as well as St. Louis University and the Louisiana-Monroe in Fayetteville this weekend.

Amundson is prepared for the teams the Racers will face at Arkansas.

“It is going to be pretty similar competition,” she said. “They are all very solid teams which is very comparable to what we had to play against this past weekend.”

Amundson said all of the preseason tournaments include several schools the team can compete with if they have a solid mentality going into the games. She said she is very proud of the way the team competed to get its first win of the season. Amundson’s goal this week, just like last week, is to compete.

With that much challenging competition, she wants the team to focus on going out there and working on the little things that need improvement.

“I don’t think we’re necessarily looking for wins and losses right now,” Amundson said. “We’re looking to kind of iron out some different things.”

She wants the team to do some of the things they did not fully accomplish at Mississippi State, such as breaking the game down and taking it one pitch at a time.

With the team’s continued hard work in practice, Amundson believes these can be fixed this weekend.

“We want to get some better quality at bats on the offensive side of things, and cleaning some things up with the pitching staff,” she said.

Amundson believes the team’s defense is its strongest aspect right now, and by cleaning up some of the other areas of concern, she sees the team doing really well in Arkansas.

Amundson said the last two games of the tournament at Mississippi State were very close games.

“We were right there knocking on the door,” she said. “We just couldn’t find a way to get in.”

With some fine-tuning, Amundson trusts the team will come out on top of those close games in Arkansas.

The Racers start the tournament at 10 a.m. today against SLU.

Story by Megan Kavy, Staff writer.