The Murray State Softball team took two falls to Eastern Illinois on Sunday but came back 4-0 on Monday. Senior pitcher, CheyAnne Gaskey pitched her eighth shutout of the season and broke the all-time strike-out record with 426 strike-outs, her career best.
“We didn’t show up on Sunday; we weren’t focused,” said Head Coach Kara Amundson. “EIU historically has been a really good team in the conference and this year they are kind having a down year and I think we know that going into it and played as if we could just stand on the field and win a softball game and that not how it happens.”
Amundson said during game two they had a rain delay and the Racers were up 6-0 and coming back on the field they shut off.
“Sunday night we had a little meeting and talked about why we play softball,” Gaskey said. “Why we do what we do every day and getting back to the basics and that helped us refocus.”
Amundson and her players mentioned how stats aren’t what they focus on. They say they only focus on being best at bat each time and winning one inning at a time.
She said she had no idea she was doing that well because the team doesn’t focus on statistics.
Gaskey said it was an awesome feeling because it wasn’t something she was trying to hit.
“I congratulated her and she said that we aren’t worried about stats—that she was just happy with the team’s win,” Amundson said. “I think that is superb leadership on her part when she just kind of pushed it aside and was just happy with the team but I reminded her that these things are about stats and it’s an accomplishment that shows how she is leading the team.”
Amundson said she was happy with her entire team but said there were four players that offensively went to work: Alexa Becker, Mo Ramsey, Jessica Twaddle and Jocelynn Rodgers. They all definitely got it done for us at the top of the order.
Twaddle was three for three at bat on Monday. Becker kept the doubles coming and scored on an RBI by Rodgers. Senior outfielder Mo Ramsey scored to put Murray State at a 2-0 lead.
“They all hit 400 or above over the weekend which is pretty crazy,” Amundson said.
The team didn’t have a mid-week game but returns to play Friday against Morehead State and then Eastern Kentucky on Saturday.
“We just need top to bottom all the time and we need everyone engaged,” Amundson said. “Every game at this point is a fight to get into the tournament and when we get there it’s a whole new game, but we just have to fight every game to make sure we are getting there first.”
Amundson said they have to show up for seven innings four times in a row in two days. She said it will take a lot but she is more than confident that the team is more than capable of doing just that going into this weekend.
Story by Da’Sha Tuck, Staff writer