Finding consistency important for Mesa

Kris Mort is still trying to figure out how so many things could go so wrong so quickly.

After sweeping a doubleheader from Regis University on Saturday, the Mavericks were shut out 2-0 in the opener of Sunday’s doubleheader.

Then everything fell apart in a 14-6 loss in the final game of the series.

“There’s something to be said for learning how to hold other people accountable when you’re working together as a group,” Mort said.

Mesa State (11-13, 7-11 RMAC) committed six errors and allowed 12 unearned runs.

“We’ve got to be a three-dimensional team,” Mort said. “We’ve got to have pitching, and we’ve got to have it all the time; we’ve got to have defense, and we’ve got to have it all the time; and we’ve got to have hitting, and we’ve got to have it all the time.

“If you can’t bring all three consistently, you’re going to be sitting where we are, around .500.”

The Mavericks were victims of some tough luck in the first game. Starting pitcher Jessica Rayman was hit by a sharp line drive near her right elbow in the second inning. She got out of the inning but came off the field shaking her pitching arm.

She returned in the third inning but was clearly not as sharp, flexing her hand between pitches.

She allowed two runs on four base hits and a walk before being pulled for Sara Jordan.

Jordan gave up one hit the rest of the way, but the Mavericks couldn’t generate any offense.

They put runners at second and third with no out in the second but couldn’t get a run home, had a runner thrown out at the plate in the fourth and stranded a runner at second with one out in the
seventh.

The Mavs hit balls right at people the entire day. The Rangers (21-12, 1-5) found gaps.

Tied 3-3 in the second game, Regis got to Cierra Lard in the fifth inning.

The Rangers used a double and a bloop single and took advantage of two Mesa State errors to chase Lard, who gave up seven runs, only two earned, and struck out four in 42/3 innings.

Jordan entered the game and got a ground ball to second, but it was mishandled. An infield single got another run home and the confidence the Mavericks had gained from four straight wins was shaken.

Jordan led off the bottom of the fifth with a solo home run. Lauren Cross was hit by a pitch and Ashlee Duffy walked. Meagan Hennessy tried to execute a bunt-and-run, but Cross hesitated breaking for the plate and was thrown out.

Duffy was also thrown out at the plate on the back end of a delayed double steal, and Katie
Mitchell struck out looking, leaving the Mavs down 7-4.

Regis sent 11 batters to the plate and scored seven runs in the top of the seventh on four hits and three errors, prompting Mort to make two defensive changes just to get out of the inning.

After the game, Mort met with her team in the outfield for more than a half-hour, trying to get some answers.

“We need to be more aggressive in terms of wanting to be the one to make the play and be willing to freight-train runners to get it, willing to freight-train teammates to get it,” Mort said. “They’ll get up, they’ll be OK. I don’t know if it was complacency or just a level of ‘somebody else will get it done’ instead of making sure.

“If you want a job done right, do it yourself, that old adage. If I want this fly ball to get caught, I’m going to catch it myself.”


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