Softball team ready for home opener


Photo: Grace Steenhagen/Iowa State Daily

Outfielder Sarah Hawryluk slides home on a double by fellow outfielder Tori Torrescano. The hit by Torrsescano also had one other RBI.

John Barry

The ISU softball team (14-19, 0-3 Big 12) will host the Oklahoma State Cowgirls (24-14, 2-1 Big 12) April 5 through 7, 2013, in a three-game home opener series.

This is the Cyclones’ second Big 12 series of the season, but they’re still looking for their first conference win. The team is on a four-game losing streak and hopes to redirect its momentum against Oklahoma State. 

“The girls are really excited for this weekend,” said junior infielder Sarah Hawryluk. “We’re excited to finally get on our home field and show Ames what we’ve been working toward.”

The cancelation of the game against Northern Iowa that was originally scheduled for April 3 may have added an extra edge to this weekend’s contests.

“It’s not bad that UNI got canceled, but because it did, we’re all just so hyped about Oklahoma State,” said sophomore Jorden Spendlove. “We’re hoping to have this stadium packed because everyone’s been talking about it all week.”

As for the visiting Cowgirls from Stillwater, Okla., the team is coming off of a series win against Texas Tech and have won 17 of their last 19 games. Last year, the Cyclones lost three close games to Oklahoma State, two of them being one-run losses. 

“There’s some added incentive to beat them after last year. We’ve been working on a backdoor curve that their pitcher throws this whole week,” Spendlove said. “We’re also practicing staying off of her riseballs because they finish out of the [strike] zone.”

Spendlove was an offensive stud for the Cyclones at Baylor in the conference’s opening weekend, hitting a conference-high .556 and driving in two runs while extending her hitting streak to a career-long 10 games.

“We want to get on a winning streak again by focusing on each pitch rather than the whole weekend,” Hawryluk said.

The first of the three-game series will start at 4 p.m on April 5.