No. 11/9 Softball Preview: St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational

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

Program:

Friday February 18

12 p.m. #11/9 TEXAS against 5/6 Florida State – ESPNU

3 p.m. #RV/25 Auburn vs. #11/9 TEXAS LONGHORN NETWORK

Saturday February 19

3 p.m. #11/9 TEXAS against #3 UCLA – ESPNU

6 p.m. #24 UCF vs. #11/9 TEXASLONGHORN NETWORK

Sunday February 20

10 a.m. #RV Notre Dame vs. #11/9 TEXAS ESPN+

*home team is ranked second

#RV stands for “receive votes” in major polls

Location: Clearwater, Florida (Eddie C. Moore Softball Complex)

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

Television: Available for all games – see TV info and program links above

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

Basic moves:

  • Texas made a previous visit to the St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational in 2019. On that trip, the Longhorns went 3-1 on aggregate with wins over Cal, Florida Atlantic and No. 18 Kentucky while losing against No. 8 LSU.
  • First-year student Mia Scott made his collegiate debut Wednesday at home against McNeese State as a third baseman tied a school record in a single game with two triples as part of an RBI 2-for-3, two-run effort in Texas’ 8-4 win.
  • Rookie Companion Sophie Simpson also shone in his circle debut against McNeese State, nine outs over 4.1 innings of work to claim first collegiate win.
  • In three seasons under head coach Mike WhiteTexas is 105-8 when scoring three or more in a game, 103-10 when hitting, 86-9 when scoring first and 52-8 when scoring in the first run.
  • Senior Transfer Launcher Hailey Dolcini wasted no time making an impression in the Burnt Orange & White on its debut weekend. The Ferndale, California, native shutout No. 15/14 Clemson while going 2-0 from the circle with a 1.08 ERA, two complete games and 16 Ks in 13 innings. She also hit the 600 career strikeout mark while striking out 12 against FGCU in her 17th career double-digit effort.
  • Overall, the Texas pitching staff got off to a good start last weekend at the FGCU, posting a 1.27 team ERA (second in the Big 12) with three shutouts (fourth in NCAA Division I) and 28 strikeouts in 33 innings. Transfer Pitchers Hailey Dolcini and Logan Hulon each threw a complete shutout in their Texas debut. Hulon even took a no-hitter in the seventh inning against Boston College before settling for a two hit.
  • softball america set three Longhorns on his various preseason All-American teams. Senior second baseman Janae Jefferson was ranked in the first team, while the junior pitcher Shea O’Leary and senior transfer launcher Hailey Dolcini were named to the second and third teams respectively.
  • Senior second baseman Janae Jeffersonsenior catcher/first baseman Marie Iakopo and junior pitcher Shea O’Leary were three of the 12 total players named to the Inaugural Preseason All-Big 12 Conference Team.
  • Softball America listed five Longhorns in its ranking of the 100 best players of the 2022 preseason: No. 6 Janae JeffersonNo. 27 Shea O’LearyNo. 31 Hailey DolciniNo. 73 Marie Iakopo & No. 94 Lauren Burk.
  • D1Softball released a ranking of the top 150 domestic players ahead of the start of the 2022 campaign with six Longhorns named: No. 12 Janae Jefferson#44 Hailey Dolcini#66 Lou GilbertNo. 71 Marie Iakopo#85 Shea O’Leary & No. 105 McKenzie Parker.
  • Texas senior second baseman Janae Jefferson and senior transfer launcher 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 among the top 25 finalists for the award in the 2021 campaign.
  • Texas certainly challenges schedule in 2022 season as Longhorns set to play 27 total games against 14 teams ranked or receiving votes in the 2022 USA Today/NFCA Preseason Poll. This includes the entire 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 State of Arizona and No. 23 Louisiana. Texas will also face “teams receiving votes” at UCF, Minnesota, Auburn, Notre Dame and Iowa State.
  • After a 43-14 record in 2021, a final No. 12 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 who have appeared in at least 30 matches (six appeared in at least 40 contests and four in at least 50 matches) and 13 total winning letters that had 68% runs, 66% hits, 53% doubles, 86% triples, 59% HRs, 59% RBIs, 68% walks, and 77% stolen bases from last season’s program-record offense (.342 team average – third in NCAA Division I) as well as 47% of team pitching wins and 51% of pitching strikeouts.

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