Spelhaug duo not enough to overcome No. 9 Texas


Tyler Coe

Ellie Spelhaug pitches the ball in game one against Oklahoma on March 24, 2023.

Pavle Markovic, Sports Reporter

Iowa State finished off a three-game series with No. 9 Texas Saturday as the team took a third loss to the Longhorns by a score of 9-1. 

Texas has officially swept the Cyclones this season by winning all three games in Ames.

The Cyclones fell to a 12-22 record on the season, going 1-8 in Big 12 play.

Freshman Jaiden Ralston got the start Saturday after a strong showing in Friday’s loss.

Ralston’s start did not go well, as Texas got out to an early lead against Iowa State, putting up seven runs in the first two innings of the game. 

Senior Ellie Spelhaug was called in for relief of Ralston in the second inning as she looked to get out of a rough inning. 

Spelhaug was able to do just that and then some as she held it down for Iowa State throughout the rest of the game.

She ended up finishing the day only giving up two runs on seven hits in five and a third innings pitched while striking out three batters against a tough Longhorn team.

“I was really happy the way I came out,” Spelhaug said. “But I was more happy on how my defense was able to have my back today.”

Her sister Carli Spelhaug started the game at first base for Iowa State as she was able to perform very well at the plate and in the field on Saturday.

Ellie had some thoughts on how her sister Carli was able to perform in Saturday’s matchup against the Longhorns.

“It’s always awesome to see her play well,” Ellie Spelhaug said. “To see her play well hypes me up, so seeing her play great today along with having a great season, just makes me proud of her like I always will be.”

Carli finished the day going two for three at the plate with a double and a single on the day. She reached in her final at-bat after a wild pitch got her to first after she struckout in the bottom of the seventh inning.

“I was really happy about my performance today. It seemed to give the team a little bit of a spark,” Carli Spelhaug said.

Carli had some thoughts as well on how her sister Ellie was able to perform in Saturday’s matchup against No. 9 Texas.

“I was so proud of her. She came in and just did her thing. She came in and rolled us ground balls and we were able to make some plays for her,” Carli Spelhaug said. “Especially me moving back to first base today was really fun being right next to her and getting able to play together was just really fun.”

Iowa State head coach Jamie Pinkerton was proud of the way the Spelhaug sisters were able to perform in Saturday’s matchup.

“Carli is a selfless player,” Pinkerton said. “She got back in a position she’s used to being in and it helped to have her play a position she’s comfortable playing at.” 

“Ellie did what Ellie does. If we can go out there and play defense behind her, she can give us a lot of ground balls so if we can get over the early inning bugaboo, it could end up being a different result,” Pinkerton said.

Iowa State was able to take Texas starter out of the game as Sophia Simpson came in for relief of Citlaly Gutierrez in the bottom of the seventh inning. 

It did not result in much for Iowa State, as the team ended up eventually falling to the Longhorns to end the series. 

Iowa State now looks ahead to a quick turnaround as it will host a doubleheader Tuesday against South Dakota State at home. The first game is scheduled to start at 1 p.m., which will then be followed by the second matchup which is currently scheduled to start at 3:30 p.m.