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Wednesday, October 5, 2022

No. 11/9 Softball preview: St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational – University of Texas Athletics

No. 11/9 Texas visits the St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational | Feb. 18-20 | Eddie C. Moore Complex, Clearwater, Fla.


Friday, February 18

12 pm #11/9 TEXAS vs. 5/6 Florida State – ESPNU

3 pm #RV/25 Auburn vs. #11/9 TEXAS – LONGHORN NETWORK

Saturday, February 19

3 pm #11/9 TEXAS vs. #3 UCLA – ESPNU

6 pm #24 UCF vs. #11/9 TEXAS – LONGHORN NETWORK

Sunday, February 20

10 am #RV Notre Dame vs. #11/9 TEXAS – ESPN+

*home team is listed second

#RV means “receiving votes” in the major polls

Location, Clearwater, Fla. (Eddie C. Moore Softball Complex)

Live Stats: Available for all games – links on the softball schedule at TexasSports.com: LINK

Television: Available for all games – see TV info and links on the schedule above

Radio: Texas’ games are scheduled for radio broadcast via web stream with Andrew Haynes on the call via this LINK, The Texas broadcast can also be heard locally on 105.3 FM as part of the Austin Radio Network supported by the flagship radio station of the Longhorns, 104.9 FM The Horn.

Base Knocks,

  • Texas made a previous visit to the St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational back in 2019. During that trip, the Longhorns went 3-1 overall with wins over Cal, Florida Atlantic and No. 18 Kentucky while losing to No. 8 LSU.
  • Freshman Mia Scott registered quite the collegiate debut on Wednesday at home against McNeese State as the third baseman tied a school single-game record with two triples as part of a 2-for-3, two-run, RBI effort in Texas’ 8-4 win.
  • Fellow rookie Sophia Simpson also sparkled in her debut from the circle against McNeese State, striking out nine over 4.1 innings of work in earning her first collegiate victory,
  • In three seasons under head coach Mike WhiteTexas is 105-8 when scoring three-or-more runs in a game, 103-10 when out-hitting its opponent, 86-9 when scoring first and 52-8 when scoring during the first inning.
  • Senior transfer pitcher Hailey Dolcini wasted no time making a strong impression in the Burnt Orange & White during her debut weekend. The Ferndale, Calif., native shutout no. 15/14 Clemson while going 2-0 from the circle with a 1.08 ERA, two complete games and 16 K’s over 13 innings, She also reached the 600-career strikeout mark while striking out 12 vs. FGCU as part of her 17th career double-digit K effort.
  • Overall, Texas’ pitching staff got off to a solid start last weekend at FGCU, posting a 1.27 team ERA (second in Big 12) with three shutouts (fourth in NCAA Division I) and 28 strikeouts over 33 innings, Transfer pitchers Hailey Dolcini and Logan Hulon each tossed complete-game shutouts in their Texas debuts. Hulon even took a no-hitter into the seventh inning against Boston College before settling for a two-hitter.
  • Softball America put three Longhorns on its various preseason All-American Teams, Senior second baseman Janae Jefferson was tabbed to the first team, while junior pitcher Shea O’Leary and senior transfer pitcher Hailey Dolcini were named to the second and third teams, respectively.
  • Senior second baseman Janae Jeffersonsenior catcher/first baseman Mary Iakopo and junior pitcher Shea O’Leary were three of just 12 total players named to the Inaugural Preseason All-Big 12 Conference Team,
  • Softball America listed five Longhorns among its 2022 Preseason Top 100 player rankings: No. 6 Janae Jefferson, No. 27 Shea O’Leary, No. 31 Hailey Dolcini, No. 73 Mary Iakopo & No. 94 Lauren Burke,
  • D1Softball released a Top 150 national player ranking prior to the start of the 2022 campaign with six Longhorns cited: No. 12 Janae Jefferson, No. 44 Hailey Dolcini, No. 66 Lou Gilbert, No. 71 Mary Iakopo, No. 85 Shea O’Leary & No. 105 McKenzie Parker,
  • Texas senior second baseman Janae Jefferson and senior transfer pitcher Hailey Dolcini were included as two of 50 student-athletes named to the 2022 USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Year Watch List, Both players were top 25 finalists for the award during the 2021 campaign.
  • Texas is certainly challenging itself schedule-wise during the 2022 season as the Longhorns are slated to play 27 total games against 14 teams ranked or receiving votes in the 2022 USA Today/NFCA preseason poll, That includes the entirety of the top 5: No. 1 Oklahoma, No. 2 Alabama, No. 3 UCLA, No. 4 Florida State & No. 5 Oklahoma State, as well as No. 14 LSU, No. 15 Clemson, No. 21 Arizona State and No. 23 Louisiana. Texas will also battle “teams receiving votes” in UCF, Minnesota, Auburn, Notre Dame and Iowa State.
  • Coming off a 43-14 record in 2021, a No. 12 final ranking in the ESPN.com/USA Softball & USA Today/NFCA polls and an appearance at the NCAA Stillwater Super Regional, Texas is returning 10 players that appeared in at least 30 games (six appeared in at least 40 contests and four in at least 50 match-ups) and 13 total letter winners that combined to total 68% of the runs, 66% of the hits, 53% of the doubles, 86% of the triples, 59% of the HR’s, 59% of the RBIs, 68% of the walks and 77% of the stolen bases from last season’s program-record-setting offense (.342 team avg. – third in NCAA Division I) as well as 47% of the team’s pitching victories and 51% of the pitching strikeouts.

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